Books by Laura Chester

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Rancho WeirdoHeartbeat for Horses

(2008 Ben Franklin Award for Juvenile Fiction)

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» Review from Parent:Wise

Heartbeat for Horses is a collection of writing and color photographs brought together in honor of horse crazy girls -- Those who might only live in the fantasy world of books and statues, who pin posters on their walls and dream of jumping like National Velvet, or for those who actually compete in rodeos and horse shows. It is also for those who simply enjoy the casual pleasures of riding in the backyard.

Young horse lovers everywhere will recognize themselves in Heartbeat for Horses (2007). Stunning color photographs by Donna DeMari capture the heartfelt connection between girls and horses. Various photographic stories include Blue Rider’s vaulters, a girl jockey at the track, a teenage rodeo champion, as well as the escaramuza girls of Tucson who are documented riding sidesaddle at a gallop!

Writer/Editor Laura Chester has selected a brilliant array of prose and poetry, some from classic favorites, but most from contemporary works of literature that will open new doors to the young rider-reader. Included are selections by Jane Smiley, e.e. cummings, James Herriot, lyn lifshin, Mark Spragg, Sara Gruen and many others.

Together Chester and DeMari have created an equestrian dream that gives us a glimpse into this extraordinary world. This collection is sure to touch the hearts of horse lovers everywhere.

"Books about the wild joys of riding and the profoundness of our relationships to these grand animals take us away from everyday reality," Chester says, "and remind us that horses are both noble and kind, powerful and tender, as beautiful today as they were a thousand years ago."