Book Title: Gallant: The Call of the Trail by Claire Eckard
Category: Young Adult Fiction (Ages 13-17), 300 pages
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Mill City Press
Release Date: September 2021
Content Rating: PG-13 : It’s a saga about love, relationships, personal growth and adventure, set against a backdrop of endurance racing. A strong middle grader/pre-teen could read it.
A gripping journey of a young girl and a foal who are raised together in The Valley of Hearts Delight. Gallant and Gracie have a special bond, rarely seen between a human and a horse. Separated by a bad accident when Gallant is five, each gets a second chance of happiness pursuing the long-distance sport of endurance riding, neither knowing they are leading parallel lives. Will Fate bring them together again? Gallant’s arch nemesis, The Almighty Flash, threatens to destroy all that Gallant has worked for. His misguided ambition and greed, developed at the hands of an abusive owner, has created a darkness in his soul that turns to blind fury when his endurance career is threatened.
This is a story for all middle school and high school girls who wish to own (or even owns) a horse. When I was younger, I used to enjoy reading novels about horses and fantasized about having one of my own, preferably a Palomino. That dream, alas, was never realized. I eventually put the horse books away as I grew older. I knew, though, as soon as I saw Gallant was available, that I wanted to read it.
Gallant: The Call of the Trail, by Claire Eckard, is a history about a young girl and her horse. The story is engaging and pulls at your heartstrings in so many ways.
I loved how the author began the book with a conversation between the great grandma and her young great grandson about her “special” book. After that, we get to read the account as well.
Gallant is a poignant, heartfelt tale of first love (her horse) and the link between humans and animals told from a unique point of view, with the horses and, of course, the people speaking for themselves. The author includes a lot of information on endurance racing in the book, which is also imagined from the horse’s viewpoint. It was fascinating to read because I knew very little about this aspect of horse training and competition.
(The book is well written and thoughtful. I believe the PG-13 rating is due to one horse’s anger issues, though there is also one swear word in the last 10 pages or so.)
I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
Award winning Author Claire Eckard combines her love of writing with her passion for animals to create memorable children’s books that are fun to read, but also include valuable life’s lessons. Claire grew up in England and moved to Hawaii in her early twenties where she married her husband of thirty-four years. Together they raised two sons, Mitchell and Matthew. Claire is inspired by her two Granddaughters Mila and Ella, as well as the
beautiful backdrop of the Arizona mountains where she lives. Claire has a farm full of animals, and has spent many years as a board member and volunteer of her local animal shelter.
connect with the author: website ~ facebook ~ instagram ~ goodreads
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