• Title: Enchanted Horse (First Modern Classics)
  • Author: Magdalen Nabb
  • Released: 2009-06-01
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 112
  • ISBN: 0007317336
  • ISBN13: 978-0007317332
  • ASIN: 0007317336
From School Library Journal Grade 3-6-In this fast-paced fantasy, a neglected wooden horse is changed back into the beautiful mare it once was, through the loving care of a shy, lonely, preadolescent girl. Irina sees the old rocking horse in a junkstore window and decides she must have it. The proprietor, sensing her need for it, gives Bella to her, and tells her about a live Bella, a beautiful, once-wild horse that used to belong to a local farmer who mistreated her. As the wooden horse gradually comes to life, Irina blossoms. She is happier than she has ever been, especially when her Bella takes her on thrilling midnight rides. One cold winter night, the animal leaves the child to run through the hills with a herd of wild horses. Irina is devastated. Too late she realizes she has not heeded the storekeeper's warning "Never say that any creature on this earth is yours...." She withdraws into herself again-until Bella returns, bringing her injured foal for Irina to nurse. This time she promises herself to let it go when it is grown. In so doing, she frees herself to grow up. The message may seem obvious to some, but that will not deter young horse lovers and beginning readers of fantasy, who will be absorbed by the details of equistrian care, the magic of the animal's transformation, and the excitement of the late-night rides. The many fine black-and-white drawings convey Irina's sadness, Bella's magical changes, and the strong energy of the galloping horses.
Virginia Golodetz, St. Michael's College, Winooski, VT
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Gr. 3-5. This haunting, convincing fantasy begins on Christmas Eve. Sad, lonely Irina is given a broken-down wooden horse by a blind old man who also tells her the story of Bella, an elegant mare who disappeared after the death of her abusive owner. Back at a remote farm with her neglectful parents, Irina quickly finishes her chores each day so she can groom the toy horse's coat each night. On the seventh evening, Irina is awakened by the real Bella and is delighted to go on secret twilight rides with the horse. But after she selfishly declares that Bella is "mine, all mine, and that's why I'm happy," the mare escapes with a herd of wild horses, leaving devastated Irina behind. Sensitive pencil drawings illustrate the story, which is written in lyrical prose that creates a timeless, fairy-tale world that speaks of emotional truths. The religious/philosophical moral may be out of the reach of most readers ("Never say that any creature on this earth is yours"), and the later action is telescoped in time, but the conclusion is positive: Irina cares for Bella's abandoned foal even though she knows she could lose it. Julie Corsaro --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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