Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Horse That Haunts My Heart by Deborah Smith Parker

By April

Set against the backdrop of the Rocky Mountains, Deborah Smith Parker's coming of age memoir takes place in the 1950's during three transformative summers she spent on a horse ranch.  As a young girl growing up in the Midwest, she longed for the life of a cowboy, but the closest she could get was to watch TV Westerns and play with a toy ranch set while other girls played with dolls.  Finally, when her parents allowed her to go west to live her dream, she met her first love-a horse nick-named Tank.

She spent her summers riding, wrangling, and sleeping out under the stars while her extraordinary relationship with Tank developed, shaped by the poignancy, hilarity and drama that tested relationships undergo.  (taken from the back of the book)

This book made me smile and remember growing up riding as a child myself.  I learned some cowboy language that I didn't know.  I also learned different kinds of tack and different names for horse colors.  Seeing how Deborah felt about horses made this a very uplifting and heart-felt story until the huge twist at the end.  Even though Deborah didn't like Tank in the beginning, she soon realized that she could count on him to protect her and was glad that she had such a wonderful friend the length of the time that she did.

Though this book appears to be mostly a children's book, we consider it more of a young adult book due to the 'adult nature' of one of the happenings in the book.

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