Monday, July 22, 2013

ARC Review: Red River Stallion

Red River Stallion by Troon Harrison, Februray 12, 2013. 352 pages. Published by Bloomsbury. Source: Publisher for review.
When her mother dies, Rose is left feeling completely alone in the world, but the promise of a new friendship arrives on an English ship. Fireway, a red stallion, has made the long trip to North America and Rose falls in love with his beauty instantly. The horse is headed on a westward expedition to the Red River Valley-the same place where Rose's father is rumored to be. Together, Rose and Fireaway make the journey. But bear attacks, roaring rapids, and other adventures are waiting at every turn.

Set in 1800s Canada, this novel pairs the historical adventure of Dear America with the allure of all things equestrian in a package that's sure to please young readers.
First Sentence:
I was alone in the canoe when the great creature swam out of the fog.

So, here’s my latest attempt to catch up on review books post-move. This week, I have Red River Stallion by Troon Harrison on the block for review.

If I could remember, I would probably be able to count on one hand the number of horse books I’ve read in my life (not many). While equestrian themed books are not my usual cup ‘o tea, I found myself enjoying Troon Harrison’s Red River Stallion because the story was fresh and gripping.
   What really makes this historical, equestrian themed book interesting is that while set in Canada in the early 1800s, the author blended in the beauty of the Native-American’s history and the struggle that came with it. I really enjoyed the way Amelia had one foot on the path of the two worlds she was born to and how that you could see how it affected her. Truly, it just made for interesting reading because you got to see how she would struggle to find her way in one or both worlds and because she would have to decide which she wanted to be a part of.  

I also admit that I snickered the first time the character Orchid was introduced. If you’re reading this blog and have no idea why I find it funny, then scroll up and check the name…then you may share a laugh with me.

Red River Stallion, was definitely the most interesting story involving horses that I have ever read (truly, I was never much for reading horse themed books), but what made it such a different and fascinating story was the setting.  I really liked the fact that the author was telling the story of the orphaned half Native-American, Amelia. The reason I enjoyed reading about Amelia’s story was because she was an interesting character and because it is not often that one can read a middle grade or young adult book that can take the history of Native-American’s and bring the time and setting to life so richly.

The only thing that I did not enjoy about this book would have to be that it took a little time to get going, but once Amelia finally found her purpose, taking care of Foxfire, the book really began to take off. While the beginning is a little slow, the story is definitely worth waiting around for because the author does a brilliant job.

Final Verdict: Red River Stallion, a new kind equestrian story set in Canada. Definitely one to check out especially for fans of horses and adventure.

Red River Stallion earns 4.5 out of 5 pineapples.

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