Sunday, November 26, 2017

Paisley the Pony by Cindy Freland

Paisley the Pony by Cindy Freland is about a special pony on Assateague Island off Maryland's Atlantic shore and an Indian girl named Kanti. When a Spanish ship crashes there in 1750, the Indians help the crew and horses survive. Kanti received Paisley as a gift for her 8th birthday. The story describes the work the Indians did as well as the games such as horse racing.

The story is somewhat confusing at times, especially in the beginning. It starts in first person with Alyssa (a grandmother telling the story to her granddaughter), then switches to third person. And the horses have dialog with each other as well as the humans. The transitions could be smoother.

Overall, a delightful story and gorgeous artwork!

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Diablo - Buyer Beware!

Diablo - Buyer Beware! Written by Fallacious Rose and set in Australia, this horse book will be enjoyed by readers who have learned the hard way about buying and managing their first horse! Or for young horse lovers wanting a horse!

Kim, 11 years old, desperately want her own horse, especially after a pony they leased ended up with founder. So her "mum" and new stepfather go horse hunting. After several passes on unsuitable equines, they choose Diablo. A quick trial ride goes well but that ends when they take him home. Kim can't even lead him; forget about riding him!

Kim seeks out advice on how to handle this stubborn horse - first bad advice, then some good - and finally learns horsemanship and riding skills. She also realizes that she can use some of these techniques on her older, annoying brother! Diablo actually saves her brother in the end.

The story is written in first person, and on the first page the young girl speaks to the reader. She explains that she "chats" with Diablo. That is, she translates what his body positions are saying. So there is dialog from the horse. An interesting concept, but it is written well with great insight into family relationships as well as horse training. Very comical in places!

It would make a great gift for young horse-loving girls.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Defining Gravity by Genevieve Mckay

Defining Gravity by Genevieve Mckay is about a high school teen named Astrid who who is sent to a stable to work as a punishment. Of course, she is enlightened about the wisdom of horses after getting to know them.

This is a well written book with a gorgeous cover. The plot and characters were interesting, but I guessed that Astrid would get hurt again and I was disappointed in the ending. Nothing seemed to get resolved: Astrid was still getting into trouble, her dad still had business problems and her riding instructor was still sick. While Astrid seemed to learn a few of life lessons, she didn't seem to learn from her mistakes. I know this is a series, but I would have liked  a more satisfying ending.

Visit the author's website at

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

The Spell of the Horse

The Spell of the Horse by Pam Billinge is a non-fiction account of her personal experience as well as her clients. She shares her profound bonds with a variety of horses that healed, inspired and taught her through spiritual connections. She now has a business teaching others how the horse can help them - both individuals and corporate leaders - in her rural farm in England. Visit her site at