This book is a very entertaining collection of short stories. The first one is Christmas Canter The Ghost of Barley. This story is a very clever reworking of Charles Dickens Christmas Carol. However there is one thing that makes this new reworking specially entertaining. Scrooge is…….a horse! The entire story is written from his point of view. All the Dickensian elements are there; the ghost of Barley appears and tells him there will be three spirits. The spirits all come and at the end Scrooge sees the error of his ways and reinvents himself as a horse that embodies the Christmas spirit.
The other stories are all interesting and have some connection with horses . One of the stories has two retired show horses as the central characters and it is told from their point of view.
The last story is both entertaining and amusing. This is the tale of a group of girls, known as the “lost girls” who devise a plan to stage a nativity play in the arena of the riding school they all ride at. They want to have horses, a donkey, goats and sheep! You can just imagine how many things can go wrong and they do! But there is also a mystery about a stolen horse that brings a whole other dimension to this story. Was this horse stolen or was it lost? Some very adult decisions have to be made to solve this mystery. But don’t worry, despite some dress rehearsal disasters, the nativity play goes ahead and is a great success. And at the end of the story nature provides the finishing touch with a Christmas snowfall.
I recommend this book whole heartedly. It is an easy read and all the stories are engaging sometimes with an unexpected twist . So if you have a friend or relative who likes horses this book would make a perfect Christmas present.
The introduction to the book tells us the story of the horse on the cover. His name was Rootbeer . He had a long and varied life with many jobs in which he served Humans well. I suggest you get the book so you can find out all about him.
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