Astoria: John Jacob Astor and Thomas Jefferson’s Lost Pacific Empire

Written by: Peter Stark
Narrated by: Michael Kramer
Originally Reviewed: 08-07-18 on audible.com
Rating: 1, must read for everyone

 A Perilous Journey By Land and Sea   

I’ve never been to Astoria, but have always wanted to go. I have friends living there now and I was in the midst of planning a trip to the Oregon Coast when I came across this book on an Audible sale; what a find. It’s funny how some of my most treasured books (audible, kindle, and physical) have been discovered accidentally and in preparation for a personal experience. One of the best parts of this book is found in the epilogue where the author relays his personal discovery of this story (this part also narrated by the author) and the adventure he took to retell it in this novel. This really completed the story for me as well as other non-fiction where the author gives a reason why. Unaware of this history, it was fascinating to learn a bit about John Astor and his two concurrent treks he dispatched to establish this eponymic city. If this tale were to be made into a move (or television series) I’d like to see two separate, but concurrent works with tie-ins to the other. This history has all the makings of a modern blockbuster with death, murder, explosions, betrayal, starvation, salvation, etc.. I can’t wait for my visit to the mouth of the Columbia. The narration was fine and I was able to listen at my normal 3x speed. I did think his pronunciation of the word ‘voyagers’ was distinct and that word was used often.

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