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RIMFIRE: THE BARREL RACING MORGAN HORSE

ELLEN F. FELD

Young Adult Fiction

Fall 2009 - 206 pp.

Willow Bend Publishing


ISBN: 9780970900210

Heather Richardson is initially reluctant to visit her parents' friends in the state of Oklahoma but becomes more excited when she hears they have a ranch with 20 horses. Her expectations are about to be wildly filled, as she makes a new dear friend, Katie, and discovers a whole new world of horse contests, barrel racing!!! At first glance, it seems rather easy but Heather is about to learn just how much skill is involved to train the horses to turn in different ways and directions with grace, style and speed. Add to that challenge the need to never abuse a horse in the training and to learn not to be careless in taking care of them. For these are beautiful horses whose thrill in every competition can clearly be seen in their enthusiasm in training and the actual contests! This is one summer that will fly by, for sure!

Heather is so excited about this new way of enjoying horses that she talks her friend, Nicholas's family into buying Rimfire, the horse she has come to love but can't have because her family can't afford another horse and Heather is not willing to trade one of her horses for Rimfire. One of the neat part of these Morgan Horse stories is the way friends share their passion for horse-riding and frequently ride together, riding their own horses as well as each other's horses who specialize in certain types of horse competitions.

Mistakes in the passion of enthusiasm are made by many riders, but Heather decides to barrel race a particular horse that doesn't belong to her and risks her own and Rimfire's well-being in the process. While the momentary thrill and the fear and guilt that follow are powerful feelings to prevent this from happening again, Heather has more to learn about trust, honesty, forgiveness disciplining one's self and re-earning trust.

Ellen Feld manages to teach basic skills about horses and human character without coming across like a teacher, nag, or preacher. Rimfire... like all the books in her Morgan Horse series manages to enchant all readers with a love for these beautiful horses, excitement in the challenges present in every conflict in the novels, and making the reader fall in love with horses, those who love them and the challenges they face in a very competitive field. Here's another novel that would make a terrific gift to buy for one's own reading or for some good friends and family members, young or old! Terrific, even better job in this latest novel, Ms. Feld!

Reviewed by Viviane Crystal - December 7, 2009

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