Thursday, March 09, 2006

Robin: The Lovable Morgan Horse

Like many pre-teens, I was horse-crazy as an adolescent. I loved horses, wanted a horse, and read every horse book I could find: Marguerite Henry, Black Beauty, and the Black Stallion books. I wish that Ellen Feld's Morgan Horse series had been available back then; I would have loved them. And judging by the fact that the series has twice won the prestigious Children's Choices award, lots of children do love them.

The newest book in the series is Robin: The Lovable Morgan Horse. In Robin, novice rider Karen Greene is goaded by other kids into riding a spirited horse that she can't handle. A terrible riding accident occurs, and after months of recovery Karen still has nightmares about it. She is afraid to ride again, but with the help of her gentle Morgan horse Robin, and the encouragement of Heather and other characters from the earlier books, Karen gradually overcomes her fears and faces challenges that test her courage and determination.

Ellen Feld's love of horses comes through on every page, drawing the reader into the world of horse ownership. The horses are real horses, with real personalities — each one different — and horse-loving tweens will fall for them in a big way. The story has just enough excitement to keep it interesting, without being overly frightening or suspenseful. The Morgan Horse Series would be a great addition to a school library.

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