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Favorite Grown Up Horse Books

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  • Original Poster

    still here Kat! it always take a minute or so for me to actually break away from the BB!
    But i'm leaving soon....


    • #22
      I really loved Horse Heaven and have given it as "thank you" gifts to trainers and to friends. Everyone loves it. I'm also working on my own book (targeted at pre-teens/early teens) on the horse show world, competition, horsemanship, and friendship--nothing syrupy, slice of life (I am, however, omitting the x-rated stuff...). Wish me luck (I'm fitting this into a 60 hour work week, and of course, life as PonyMom!


      • #23
        <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Janet:
        Back on topic, I second "The Lady" by Ann McCaffrey. She also wrote a (much shorter) book centerd on the US show hunter/jumper circuit that was quite good- but I forget the title.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
        to which Nancey Phillips Fisher said:

        <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Janet, please jog your memory <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

        I went to Amazon and did a search. It is "Ring of Fear", published in 1971, and it is actually available in paperback. The review says it is about racing, but it isn't, it's about hunter/jumpers.

        Actually, quite a lot of her books involve horses in one form or another.

        chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).


        • #24
          I am really at an all-time low point this week after having to put down my best good friend of the past 11 years, my Lab/Rott cross, Hoss-dog...so I was at the bookstore looking for something to ease the heartbreak. I picked up Angel Pawprints (dog memorials) and Spoken in Whispers, The Autobiography of a Horse Whisperer. Both are great--I thought the Horse Whisperer thing might be a knock off of Monty Roberts, but I can't put this book down. Great read--makes you think.


          • Original Poster

            I'm taking a moment for you and your friend. I lost the best one I ever had in February; unfortunately, very well acquainted with sadness this year. My thoughts are with you...


            • #26
              Thanks, Finzean, my thoughts go to you, too. I'm trying my best to comfort my other two dogs who are just heartbroken--they're very depressed. That's part of the reason I haven't been at the barn--I'm staying close to them. If the rain holds off, I may get out to the barn and take a brain-wash ride. When I finish this book, I'll take it out there and leave it for you if I don't see you! Thanks, again...


              • #27
                I've read In The Presence of Horses. Definitely not a horse whisperer kind of book. It is about a trainer at loose ends with life and career. I enjoyed reading it, but not the most cheerful horse book.

                Considering the Horse is what you may be thinking of. It is a collection of horse training 'stories' about an old-timer NH trainer. The book, written by Mark Rashid, is not fiction although it is entertaining. (I'm a big fan of M. Rashid's training methods.)

                And let me add my voice: "Hey, Jody Jaffe! I'm impatiently awaiting your next book."

                [This message has been edited by rescuemom (edited 05-25-2000).]
                Proud adopter of Win
                Days End Farm Horse Rescue
                Protection for Horses - Education for People


                • Original Poster

                  Went to the library - hours have changed and it was closed. Went to the bookstore and rifled through shelves and shelves and shelves of books. Guess what? Not one Jody Jaffe book, not one McCaffrey book, not one copy of In the Presence of Horses!!! I was overwhelmed by the selection of D.Francis books (at least 15 different titles) and couldn't choose - Field of 13 is a collection, anyone know if it's good? Anyway, I ordered the 3 Jaffe books and ended up buying 2 non-horsey books. Wish I lived in a bigger town...


                  • #29
                    Oh, Finzean, there is NO such thing as a bad Dick Francis - you can read them chronologically and see how he grows as a writer, or you can start with Field of 13 and work your way back. I love the ones where racing and horses are periferal (Hot Money, Straight, Decider) as much as where they are center (Banker, Risk, Dead Cert, and so on) I doubt there are any that I have not read at least twice. Be sure to have your tissues for Field of 13 - at least one of the stories is a sobber....

                    If you go back a few months on this BB, you will find another thread or two on books, with long monlogues by yours truly, former book dealer (with 25,000 or so still collecting dust)...Authors to check out are: (the late) Jane McIlvaine McClary - author of A Portion for Foxes and some others, all excellent, Edith Somerville & Martin Ross (The IRish RM), O'donoghue "Winner", William Murray (a bunch of racing novels), Ainslee Sheridan (Trophies - excellent read - can be found through AMazon's out of print service),Bill Shoemaker wrote a couple that are OK, then there is Show Gypsies - author slips my mind right now - rather trashy about showing in the 70's.

                    I will try to find the ealier thread and bring it forward.
                    co-author of 101 Jumping Exercises & The Rider's Fitness Program; Soon to come: Dead Ringer - a tale of equine mystery and intrique! Former Moderator!


                    • #30
                      Dee, you have my deepest sympathy. Our beloved companions are, so unfairly, much shorter lived than we are. But, then, they don't have to miss _us_, which, given their generous, devoted and loyal natures, might be even more difficult for them than it is for us.

                      When you're ready, there's a great book called "My Dog Tulip", by ?? Ackerman, a very unusual and moving description of the joys and concerns of having a dog.
                      Tinwhistle Farm


                      • #31
                        My favorite D. Francis books (can't recall the titled, anyone help?) to recommend:

                        The one about the semi-estranged son whose wealthy father who decides to buy part of a racehorse... and someone seems to be trying to kill the dad and he asks the son to help protect him? And the dad has a couple of ex-wives and several kids who may be suspects?

                        The one about the colt who is syndicated at stud and his foals start being born deformed? That was a good one.


                        That's HOT MONEY, JenniferS...W.

                        [This message has been edited by Weatherford (edited 05-27-2000).]
                        Third Charm Event Team


                        • #32
                          Did anyone ever read a torrid romance novel steeped in the European show jumping scene titled "Riders." ?? It was ala Danielle Steele romance novel, but some of my friends in "the know" swore many of the characters were very closely linked to active riders -- at that time. This was a good ten years ago, but it was an entertaining read. Howeve, some of the classics, like the Rudyard Kipling about the polo pony are great. Love Dick Francis too.


                          • #33
                            Marnye--the book you're thinking of is Jilly Cooper's Riders. Immensely fun and trashy. Cooper has also written some sequels to Riders, featuring Rupert Campbell-Black, the "bad guy" (don't worry--he actually turns out ok, sort of). They're called Rivals, Polo, Appassionata, The Man Who Made Husbands Jealous, and Score. I ordered mine from Amazon.co.uk.

                            Another British writer that I discovered from UK Amazon is Fiona Walker. She's written 2 books ala Jilly Cooper, but about eventing--"French Relations" and "Well Groomed". Again, trashy, fun "beach reads"--and the horsey elements are fairly accurate, I think.

                            Amazon.co.uk is great for books that are only published in England--a lot more "horsey" novels that in the US. Shipping's a bit expensive, but if the books are in stock, it has taken me less than a week to get my orders from the UK.


                            • #34
                              finzean: You'll probably have to order In the Presence of Horses online if you can't find it at the library. It falls into that "artsy, only published in hardback and available in bookstores for about 15 mins." category. Dick Francis' Field of Thirteen is a good place to start and you'll get a real flavor for what his novels are like.
                              Proud adopter of Win
                              Days End Farm Horse Rescue
                              Protection for Horses - Education for People


                              • #35
                                Thanks, Nancey, for the kind words--you are so right. I believe my old pal might have been a Grey Friars's Bobby if I had gone on ahead of him. I'm ordering My Dog Tulip from Amazon today.
                                As far as the horse books go, I'm still recommending Spoken In Whispers--I'm almost finished with it. This girl can really write; she is so colorful in her descriptions that you really get a picture in your mind.
                                But if you're not in the mood to think a whole lot, there's no better "brain candy" than Riders! I heard it's on Video....


                                • #36
                                  I just finished reading "Riders" by Jilly Cooper (absolutely, sinfully, delicious trash!, couldn't put it down) and "Barn Blind" by Jane Smiley (ok but predictable). I got them for free. Yes, free. If you can get the title and the author your local library (probably won't have them on their shelves) can arrange for an interlibrary loan. All free! Usually takes a week or two then they call you up and the books are there. Love this thread and will use it for future library loan requests!


                                  • #37
                                    finzean, if you're out of summer reads, try this one: Traveller, by Richard Adams (author of Watership Down). It is Traveller's account of his time with General Robert E. Lee. I found it very moving. This book prompted me to read the letters of General Lee and to also read Volume 4 of his biography, and I realized that the Traveller book is written by taking exact incidents from Lee's record and relating them through the horse, so the book is factual. One of the many touching things is that Traveller thinks that Lee has won the war--he believes that his master, who he has always known to be giving orders, has finally beaten the blue men and ordered them to go home. It's so touching how our horses believe in us.....

                                    This was a really good book--one of those that not only was wonderful to read, but provided me with links to many other books that I am now thoroughly enjoying.

                                    Anyone else read it?

                                    [This message has been edited by Anne FS (edited 05-26-2000).]


                                    • #38
                                      "Considering The Horse" and "A Good Horse is Never A Bad Color" are nonfiction training books by Mark Rashid, but truly they're collections of short stories and are very entertaining. His third book has just come out - I have it on order from Amazon.

                                      Anne McCaffrey also has a newer small book called "Horses For The King", a fictional account of Arabians being brought over to England and the development of farriery. Not as good as The Lady, but still a fine diversion.

                                      Other favorite books/authors, both will generally be marked in the Young Adult or Juvenile section, but only because the subjects are teenagers:

                                      K.M. Peyton is British and wrote wonderful books like "Fly By Night" and "The Team" and "Darkling".

                                      Barbara Morgenroth has written two that I know of set in the American hunter/jumper world, "Ride a Proud Horse" and "Last Junior Year." I especially like them because they are accurate not only in details but also in some of the realities and politics -- like that talent isn't enough to become Great Famous Rider.
                                      If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket


                                      • #39
                                        It's so frustrating to me how difficult it is to find adult horsey fiction. They categorize juvenile fiction books by subject, but not adult. The only way I stumble onto these books is by seeing a horse on the cover at the bookstore or library (which causes my husband great amusement -- "Oh, she'll read anything if it's got a horse on the cover").

                                        Surely someone by now must have started an online bookstore of some sort devoted to horsey novels!
                                        If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket


                                        • #40
                                          About the Jilly Cooper novel Riders. yes, it is based on British riders, and yes, some of them are still riding. Just look **really** carefully at the british team and you can start to figure out who is who. FYI, the character of Jake was loosely based on a rider from Europe who did run off with another team members wife.

                                          The story is that the british equestrian community gave Cooper "cart blanche" at shows, to totally immerse herself in the equestrian experience. When the book came out, several riders, who the characters are based on, were so upset that they tried to stop further publication of the book. She was cut off from the show jumping community in the UK. There is a BBC mini-series based on the book which would be an absolute hoot to see. So, yes, the characters in the book are totally based on UK riders! My mother-in-law, who is Irish told me this. She thinks Eddie Macken is God!