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The Sport of Kings Audiobook

The Sport of Kings: A Novel

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Publisher's Summary

Hellsmouth, an indomitable thoroughbred with the blood of Triple Crown winners in her veins, runs for the glory of the Forge family, one of Kentucky's oldest and most powerful dynasties. Henry Forge has partnered with his daughter, Henrietta, in an endeavor of raw obsession: to breed the next superhorse, the next Secretariat. But when Allmon Shaughnessy, an ambitious young black man, comes to work on their farm after a stint in prison, the violence of the Forges' history and the exigencies of appetite are brought starkly into view. Entangled by fear, prejudice, and lust, the three tether their personal dreams of glory to the speed and grace of Hellsmouth.

A spiraling tale of wealth and poverty, racism and rage, The Sport of Kings is an unflinching portrait of lives cast in shadow by the enduring legacy of slavery. A vital new voice, C. E. Morgan has given life to a tale as mythic and fraught as the South itself - a moral epic for our time.

©2016 C. E. Morgan (P)2016 Macmillan Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (116 )
5 star
 (52)
4 star
 (28)
3 star
 (18)
2 star
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1 star
 (4)
Overall
3.8 (105 )
5 star
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3 star
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1 star
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Story
4.3 (104 )
5 star
 (57)
4 star
 (28)
3 star
 (13)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (3)
Performance
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  •  
    BranWick 09-30-16
    BranWick 09-30-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    34
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    74
    18
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    Story
    "This one is all over the place"
    Would you listen to The Sport of Kings again? Why?

    I will definitely listen to this again in hopes that I'll pick up on more of the nuances.


    Any additional comments?

    Being a Kentucky girl, I loved the subject matter and setting (primarily the beautiful Horse Country and farms around Paris and Versailles). The story was breathtaking in spurts, but at times it felt like I was trapped in a Terrence Malick movie. I'm still not sure what actually happened to Allmon, but I liked the book enough to listen to again to try and sort it out.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Polly Ulichny 09-23-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    113
    7
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    Story
    "Wish there was a pronunciation coach"

    The book is an epic. Complex, extravagantly written, brutally honest about how histories undo us as individuals and as a nation.
    The narrator has a good voice and does a range of accents very well, but there are many big, esoteric words in this novel and it jars to hear them mispronounced. Undoes the underlying intelligence of the writing. Isn't that a director's job?

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CHRISTINE 11-29-16
    CHRISTINE 11-29-16 Member Since 2015

    Art historian, gardener, feminist. Read for language, characters, history, esp. 18th c. History in US, France, GB, SE Asia, Caribbean.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    192
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    "Not a winner"

    I just could not get into this book. Suggest listening to the preview before ordering.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joan Ifland Cincinnati, Ohio 09-21-16
    Joan Ifland Cincinnati, Ohio 09-21-16 Member Since 2015

    I am a Doctor of Nutrition in the field of addictive nutrition. I teach people how to withdraw from addictive foods and build new lives.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Complicated"

    This is a powerful story, powerfully written. I did not give it the full five stars because of the racism. It is a tale of insanity born of racism and poverty. The characters are haunting. They are beautifully drawn. The story will take you places that are unimaginable.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rachel Frances Small 07-01-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    3
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    "life-altering"

    This book digs deeply into the lines of our Kentuckian family tree in ways that blew me away again and again.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Henry 07-01-16
    Henry 07-01-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    3
    1
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    Story
    "not what it's cracked up to be"
    What disappointed you about The Sport of Kings?

    over the top florid, self-indulgent, not really about The Sport of Kings at all


    Has The Sport of Kings turned you off from other books in this genre?

    just future books by this author


    What aspect of George Newbern’s performance would you have changed?

    accuracy in pronunciation--many errors


    What character would you cut from The Sport of Kings?

    too many to count


    Any additional comments?

    I've never commented on a book but this one got such good reviews and as a horse owner and racing fan, I had to try it. I stuck it out, hoping it would improve (and it does, briefly, with the entry of the jockey), but overall it was an amazing disappointment. Rambling and overheated.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Di-zee 08-05-17
    Di-zee 08-05-17
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "Amazing and timely"

    Beautifully written about family, horse racing, the legacy of slavery and strong women who aren't as strong as they'd like to be. With health care hanging in the balance for so many of our citizens, hearing how Allmon's mother couldn't get the medicines and attention she desparately needed was painful, painful. And why, if you need money, you'll turn to the street corners to sell if there's no other way. This is a book that you may consider long after you finish.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    disudds SLC, UT 07-15-17
    disudds SLC, UT 07-15-17 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    51
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    65
    39
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    3
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    Story
    "Disappointing"

    I had really high hopes for this book as I enjoy reading about horses and racing, but the dark characters and unsettling story lines left me vastly disappointed. I was disgusted by Harry Forge as soon as he became an adult and never felt any sympathy for him again. I had some hope for Henrietta, but she too disappointed. The only character I liked for even a little while was Allmon and he made such horrible choices that he was too flawed to connect to as well. The rampant racism didn't paint a picture of the south so much as it disgusted me and in the end there was nothing memorable enough in the novel to make me think I'll remember it with anything but distaste in the future. The narration was good enough but not enough to save the novel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MARJE 02-26-17
    MARJE 02-26-17 Member Since 2014
    ratings
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    13
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    "Fascinating tale & facts"

    Learned so much about history horses human nature in this exciting tale of unforgettable characters

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    SLW the Burgh 01-28-17
    SLW the Burgh 01-28-17 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
    ratings
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    315
    9
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    0
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    Story
    "Disjointed and overblown"

    Parts of this were very well done but it felt like discrete slabs were being forced into a mold and they didn't coalesce into a unified whole. Some of it was way over the top, which at one point the author seemed to acknowledge, but then just dismissed. The ending, to me, didn't follow from the preceding narrative. A massive effort that might have benefited from more editorial input.

    The narrator was good overall but made some odd pronunciation mistakes (confusing the verb and noun forms of "lead" and mispronouncing "vise" for example).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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