Come along for a spirited ride as Bramble -- a horse with interesting "little ways"- and her devoted girl, Maggie, make their debut in this inviting early reader. Maggie wants a pony to ride and take care of, and to prepare she's been reading a big book on horse care. Meanwhile, Bramble is bored with giving riding lessons and walking in circles. She's looking for just the right person to take her away from her routine. Is it a perfect match? Maggie loves Bramble as soon as she sees her, but there are some things Bramble has to be sure of. Will Maggie let Bramble venture into new places? Will she protect Bramble from strange objects in the yard? Will she, most importantly, know when Bramble needs her undivided attention? This charming and funny early reader is an ideal match for young animal lovers and anyone who has ever longed for a friend who truly understands.
About the Author
Jessie Haas has written more than twenty-five books, most of them about horses. She says, "I wrote Bramble and Maggie while getting to know my new horse, Robin. Like Bramble, she has her little ways, but we are now good friends. She thinks I still have a lot to learn, though." Jessie Haas lives in Vermont. Alison Friend is the illustrator of What Color Is Caesar? by Maxine Kumin and Scrawny Cat by Phyllis Root. She also illustrates and designs greeting cards. Alison Friend lives in South Yorkshire, England.
The narrative voice in this early chapter book is superb—direct, succinct, and easy to read for younger horse lovers, but slyly slanted conceptually to encompass both horse and human perspectives. Readers lucky enough to know a horse personally will recognize equine behavior expertly sketched, yet gently articulated as an evolving relationship... And the humorous, lightly drawn gouache illustrations of big-eyed horses and their nonplussed riders will evoke emotions familiar to anyone—adult or child—who has ever struggled to understand a mount with a mind of its own.
—The Horn Book
A fully illustrated story in four chapters, this transition book could be shelved with either beginning reader books or chapter books. Ranging in size from double-page spreads to small vignettes, the gouache paintings create a distinctive look with pleasant hues, rounded forms, and expressive faces. While enjoying the sometimes amusing insights into Bramble’s thoughts, children will empathize with Maggie’s attempts to make her new pal happy. An engaging horse story for young chapter-book readers and a good read-aloud choice as well.