Book Review by Aarene Storms: Finny and the Boy from Horse Mountain

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Finny and the Boy from Horse Mountain (ARC) by Andrea Young

14-year-old Finny loves horses, and works at an elite show-jumping stable in exchange for riding lessons. When she sees an emaciated horse by the side of the road, she arranges to adopt him (without telling her parents or the stable manager), and dreams of their success together. However, the horse is huge, untrained, and potentially dangerous. Can they ever find happiness together?

Yes, of course they can.  

All it will take is a handsome boy who happens to be a horse trainer, a kindly horse rescue lady who happens to be a retired world-class show jumping trainer, and a competent veterinarian who happens to enjoy under-billing kids for treatment and services.

Of course there are other impediments to happiness, like the Snobby Rich Girl, the Loving but Neglectful Mom, and the Greedy Uncle straight out of Central Casting.

The first third of the book was fraught with plot and terminology errors. However, the final two-thirds of the story rose up a bit from the mundane, ending with sweet romance and a thrilling horse race. Horse-loving readers may roll their eyes at some of the goofs, but they will read to the end and cheer at the finish line.

No cussing, no sex. Some bullying, some violence, some kissing. Grades 6 and up.

The events may not have happened; still, the story is true.  --R. Silvern

Aarene Storms, youth services librarian
Richmond Beach and Lake Forest Park Libraries, KCLS


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