Friday, October 26, 2007

It's amazing the things you toss out, only to rediscover years later that those very same items were really quite valuable, if only in sentimental terms. Classic horse books are such things, in my mind. I used to hoarde them when I was young, as if each one was a literary treasure. At the very least, they were my refuge. I could lose myself among the pages of a great horse story. At least for a while I could be on the back of a galloping Arabian stallion, or hunkering down with a pony during an East coast storm, or gentling a mustang filly named Flicka. I'm not sure why I cast off these hardcover gems originally. But for the last few years I've been re-collecting them all. My bookshelf has become a stable of classic horse books from my youth: Smoky (3 copies), Black Beauty (a pair of copies, each with a different illustrator), Ride Like an Indian (an admirable admonition if there ever was one), and many others, including a healthy dose of Marguerite Henry and C.W. Anderson.

A while back we conducted our own informal survey of favorite horse books for Horse Illustrated. You can read the list of favorites here:
Favorite Classic Horse Books

While re-reading that list I found the lack of contemporary horse fiction interesting. So someday I may write my own. I can't reveal much about the plot, as it's in a rough draft format now, except to say that it includes lots of action, some humor, at least one great horse and a dash of romance. You know, just an everyday sort of tale that occurs all the time when you spend your life with horses!


Jessica said...

Cindy, I'm glad you're collecting again! I was just going through storage the other day and experience complete nastalgia when I just happened to stumble upon a carton of some of my old horse books. Much to my family's dismay, I couldn't part with any of mine. Those books and I have had WAY too many late nights together. :-) Despite my many barn buddies, I had found no one as horse crazy as I except for some of the characters in those books.

PS - I can't wait for your first fiction novel! I know it will be fantastic as always. :-)

Cindy Hale said...

Thanks, Jessica, for sharing your librarian instincts! When my husband and I moved to this new house, I also had to go through my book collection and decide which ones to keep and which to give away to some other deserving reader. It was hard to part with any of them! Also, I find that just when I think I have collected all the classic old horse books I'll ever need or want, I stumble onto ebay or a used book website and find another title that just "calls" to me!