I'm nearing the end of my stack. One more to go after the book I'm about to review. Of the books I read this week, this book had the weakest writing. It was a very interesting thing to sit down, open up a book, and feel that my middle school writing students could have written the essays in this book. That said, the reason people will read this book is not for the writing. It is for the stories and the primary subject--Horses.
I have a daughter who loves horses. Honestly, it is a love that I don't understand or grasp. I decided to read The Horse of My Heart: Stories of the Horses We Love, edited by Callie Smith Grant, with the hope that the stories would help me understand my daughter a little better. This collection of stories did impress upon my heart something I already knew--that there are many people who love horses. They love them the way my husband loves dogs. They love them the way I love to take pictures and capture God's beauty.
The stories collected by Ms. Grant are retold by adults of experiences they've had at various ages. Horses hold a special place in each person's heart. One story I read was about a mean horse who bullied the other horses until one horse stood up to him. Another story focused on a mother's love for Secretariat and a shrine she had in her home for the horse. Still another was about a man who spent a summer with the intention of doing construction and instead took care of the livestock all summer long. If I were to sum up all of the stories into one succinct idea it would be a plea for people to understand that horses' lives have value.
The writing is similar to what you'll find in an issue of Guideposts or Reader's Digest. They are simple stories, with some description. The tone of each story is very familiar as if the individual writers are retelling their stories to friends they haven't seen in a long time. Standard transitions are used in a very standard grammatical form in each story. If you are looking for a literature type of book about horses, this book is not what you are looking for. If you are looking for a Reader's Digest type of book about horses, then this is the book you're looking for.
Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Revell Books.