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Black Beauty

3.93  ·  Rating Details  ·  176,593 Ratings  ·  2,796 Reviews
A horse is a horse of course unless of course the horse is Black Beauty. Animal-loving children have been devoted to Black Beauty throughout this century, and no doubt will continue through the next.
Although Anna Sewell's classic paints a clear picture of turn-of-the-century London, its message is universal and timeless: animals will serve humans well if they are treated
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Paperback, 245 pages
Published March 1st 2003 by Scholastic Paperbacks (first published 1877)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Susan
Sep 10, 2014 Susan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book I ever read. I remember the day that I brought it in to show to my teacher, Miss Gerardi. She asked me if I could read it, so I started reading it aloud to her right away.

The story is told in Black Beauty's own words. Beauty's friends are hard to forget, especially high-spirited Ginger. Anna Sewall's words are full of loving empathy for these beautiful animals. The story was set in 19th century England, at a time when almost everyone came into frequent contact with horses
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Stephanie
Beautifully written... Hauntingly sad....
Autobiography of a horse in early 1800's London...


5 Bright and shining gold stars

Black Beauty was one of my favorite childhood stories and I greatly enjoyed re-reading it as an adult!!! The book has not lost any of its magic over time (if it is truly for the 9-12 year old crowd as billed, consider me young at heart)!

Told from the point of view of a horse, Black Beauty's early upbringing with his wonderful mother and agreeable master was joyful. Next,
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Carol
Apr 30, 2016 Carol rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
"My doctrine is this, that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt.

BLACK BEAUTY, with the help of some of her friends and acquaintances, narrates her own life story in this absolute gem of a children's classic. I've always loved the beauty and grace of horses, but now have an even greater respect and appreciation for them......and their needs.

A few heartbreaking stories are told here, but the positive, encouraging message

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Melody
Feb 10, 2008 Melody rated it it was amazing
I revisited this classic horse story not knowing what to expect, really. I have found that I can't really trust my childhood memories. In this case, however, the years made no difference. The odd thing I noticed while reading this book was how completely I'd internalized the messages regarding animals and how one should treat them. I know that I must have read this 20 or 30 times before I was 14, but I didn't realize that I was memorizing whole chunks of it and grafting it into my moral code. It ...more
Debbie Zapata
Mar 02, 2016 Debbie Zapata rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: douglas
Do not be expecting an objective review here. I have loved this book since a copy was given to me at the end of my sixth grade school year and have read it so many times I practically know it by heart. And as a matter of fact, I still have that very book! Here is the GR link for it, which did not take me nearly as long to find as I thought it might (there are nearly 800 editions of Black Beauty listed).
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...

The story follows Black Beauty from his days as a foa
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Chris
Black Beauty is one of those rare books that can preach without being preachy. Anna Sewell wrote this to illustrate the abuse of horses, in particulary the harsh use of the bearing rein. The bearing rein was used to get the horse's head arched, but made it difficult for the horse to breathe and near impossible for the horse to pull a carriage uphill. When Sewell died, the hearse to carry her body used horses with bearing reins. Her mother went out and made the driver get rid of them.

Another Sewe
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Mike (the Paladin)
Jan 16, 2013 Mike (the Paladin) rated it did not like it
I'm sorry, I read this book when I was 6 or 7 and it almost scarred me for life..the sight of Ginger's body being carted away stayed with me for years. Between this, Where the Red Fern Grows, The Yearling, and of course Old Yeller I have to assume that somewhere there is a Marquis de Sade school of children's literature. I never gave these to my children as they were growing up (they had to make do with Narnia, Charlie Bucket, and some others). Neither the books nor the movies did I take them to ...more
Lisa Vegan
Aug 28, 2007 Lisa Vegan rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyoone who loves horses or well written children's literature
This book probably deserves 5 stars or at least 4, and I do recommend it to everyone, especially to girls who love horses. I’m giving it only 3 stars, however, not because I wasn’t one of those girls who were big horse fans (which I wasn’t really), but because for me it was just too emotionally harrowing. This might have been the first book I ever read that made me sick with depression. The horse goes through a lot of suffering in this book. Not for the overly sensitive but a beautifully told st ...more
Werner
Oct 13, 2015 Werner rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of 19th century fiction; kids with good reading skills
Shelves: classics, books-i-own
Note, Oct. 13, 2015: The review below is premised on the idea that this is a children's book; it's typically treated as such today, and I did read it as a kid. But my fellow Goodreader Fiona just made me aware that Sewall actually intended the novel for adult readers. This should be kept in mind in approaching and interpreting it!
**********************************

Since this is basically a children's book, my rating is based on my reaction to it as a child reader. If I re-read it now and rated i
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Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder
A lovely, lovely story!

The author effortlessly inspired me to suspend disbelief and lose myself in the world of a horse via his thoughts and impressions!
Brenda
Mar 06, 2016 Brenda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 8-long-ago
This was my favorite book as a child. Although my edition was published in 1955 by Whitman, my cover is different than the one shown. I'll try to add a photo later. (Well, I can't seem to get the link correct and the image just gives an error.)

Try this: https://www.flickr.com/photos/2214676...
Ellinor
As I young girl I never was much into horses as were all the other girls from my class. This is why I never read Black Beauty. I also never saw any of the movie adaptions. All I knew was that it was about a very beautiful horse.
Reading this book I was surprised by three things: First of all, it was completely different from what I expected. I had kind of imagined a story about a wild horse. This so totally wasn't the case. The second thing was, that Anna Sewell turns out to be the Charles Dicken
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Jordan
Sep 18, 2007 Jordan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: horse lovers
Shelves: literature, animals
I was so in love with horses from a young age and I remember crying my little eyes out when I read this book. It broke my heart when poor Black Beauty was abused and broken. I was elated when Beauty was reunited with a former caregiver. This classic story is great and a must for anyone who cares for animals.
Amanda OH MY GOD IT Burns
Mar 17, 2016 Amanda OH MY GOD IT Burns rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, prologue
What a bleak story. It’s interesting how I keep looking back on books that I loved as a child with a happy heart, only to discover how my memory of them is completely different from what they really are. Or maybe it’s just that my outlook on life has changed since then, that I now see and know about certain realities that I wasn’t aware of back then. It’s like a bucket of ice water called knowledge is being thrown in my face with each book I take off of my memory shelf.

This story is overflowing
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Kelly
Sep 02, 2008 Kelly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can't count the number of times I cried over this when I was a kid.
Anya
Black Beauty was the first novel I read at the age of eight and the first I cried my eyes out to. The story follows the life of the titular horse Black Beauty chronicling his childhood as a young, care-free colt to the onerous days where he worked for several merciless human masters.

I grew up in a house that was home to abandoned or injured critters and adoptive pets. I adored animals and being the anti-social child that I was always found a non-judgemental, loving friend in them. So it was only
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Evelyn (devours and digests words)
A timeless classic, indeed.

I've read this years ago as a child but forgot most of what the book is actually about. I think I didn't even catch on the moral Black Beauty tries to convey here! I was also disinterested when it comes to animals back then and I was absolutely increduled at the idea of reading in a horse's point of view. Also, the part where Ginger died and got carted away left me utterly depressed. I dropped the book and did not look back... until now, that is.

Today, I realize how
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Filipa
Feb 26, 2015 Filipa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ultimamente o que me tem apetecido comprar e ler são clássicos.
Descobrir clássicos.
Acumular clássicos.
Descobrir edições bonitas de clássicos a adicioná-los à pilha por ler.
Nesta onda, descobri este livrinho, que é um clássico infantil e que, também tem uma adaptação cinematográfica, que conto ver em breve.

"Black Beauty" traz-nos a história de um cavalo desde o seu nascimento até à sua velhice.
Black Beauty é um cavalo que, desde que nasce até aos seus primeiros anos, tem uma vida que ele adora,
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Johnny Waco
The Victorian period saw a dramatic rise in the middle class and in the leisure time that this new class had to spend on themselves and their causes. Childhood became more important to the middle class and so the first flowering of children's books, a genre that has prospered up until our own time. One of the great Victorian children's novels is Black Beauty, which illustrated the virtues of obedience and cheerfulness, while also bringing the issue of animal abuse into the public eye.

Black Beaut
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Maxine  (Booklover Catlady)
This was a firm favourite in childhood. In fact a good portion of my beloved books back then involved horses, The Black Stallion, Flicker, The Bumper Girls Collection of Horse Stories. I'm pretty sure I dreamed of having my own horse too, sadly I had to share Barbie's with her instead. Scarred for life.

Set in turn of the century London this book was a moving and powerful read for me, I recall feeling quite emotional in parts and read it numerous times. I was in love with Black Beauty, like many
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Elizabeth
Black Beauty, why you make me cry? That was very rude.
Lynne King
Dec 30, 2012 Lynne King rated it it was amazing
Shelves: classics
I read this book years ago and when I purchased a DVD yesterday on Black Beauty and watched it, I experienced my initial emotion of seeing the sadness of cruelty to animals. I always loved horses as a child and still do.

The style of the book is simple but Black Beauty is so exquisitely written that it caused me to cry.

Looking at the internet today, I see that as it is in the public domain it costs nothing to purchase on Kindle. Incredible to see that.

I recommend this book to all ages.
Jessica
May 25, 2008 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kidlit
Ah, the Victorians! I had no idea that this book wasn't in fact a cute story about a horse, but actually a treatise on animal cruelty. So there I was, reading this book aloud to my three-year-old, and skimming over things like horses being beaten to death or just whipped until blood is dripping in the streets of London! WOW! It's a great book, but I think it's definitely for older children, who can handle this sort of realism and will be able to discuss their feelings with you.
Laura
This a very touching novel by Anna Sewell who described the abuse of bearing rein in the horses. Nowadays this question of mistreatment of animals is becoming a harsh reality even in the XXI century.

A movie was made based on this book Black Beauty (1994).

Lady Haley *Words and Romance are my Life*
Very good. I have everybody call it sad but I don't know why. I mean, it was sad because of how some grooms and masters treated their horses. But it ended happy. I heard, that after Black Beauty got published lots of the harsh treating of the horses stopped. I think that is very cool. But either way, this is a classic for everyone!!!
Pam
Jan 10, 2008 Pam rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Shelves: favourite
My first written introduction into the wrd of animal cruelty. As an animal loving youngster of about 7 years, this book made me angry, made me cry. It had stayed with me always, though I could never read it again - too upsetting. An important book with as much relevance today as when it was written, sadly.
Dee Marsh
Jul 11, 2008 Dee Marsh rated it really liked it
No book review by a horse loving reader would be complete without this childrens classice. I still have my copy after what must be 50 years.
Wendy
Sep 30, 2011 Wendy rated it really liked it
As probably everyone is aware, this book was the reason people started noticing how horribly horses were often treated back in the day, and is either the or one of the first examples of a book written from an animal's perspective. This gives the novel historical value.

I also believe that it has value for other reasons, and I don't believe this is a novel that should ever have been relegated to 'children's literature', for two reasons. The 'animal's perspective' angle is one that I believe many p
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Cissy
Aug 13, 2008 Cissy rated it it was amazing
I read this at the same time as my 9 year old, and we both truly enjoyed it. Besides a great, touching story that is well-written and from an unusual point of view, this novel addresses important issues that I was able to discuss with my son: treatment of animals, keeping the Sabbath, kindness versus selfishness, doing your best work, and others. Very readable to young children...we read the original text without too much trouble and that's not always possible with those "old" books. Add this to ...more
Saoirse Sterling
Read as part of the #InfiniteVariety2016 Reading Challenge based on the BBC's Big Read poll.

I was surprised at the date this was written. It has a "whenever, whatever time" kind of feel to it and I loved that. Unfortunately, I didn't like much else. It was splendidly written, though at times it felt more like an instruction manual on how to look after horses than anything else. I just didn't enjoy the disjointed way it was told: obviously anything written from the P.O.V. of a horse isn't going t
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Catching up on Cl...: Black Beauty - NO Spoilers 14 32 5 hours, 28 min ago  
Catching up on Cl...: Black Beauty - SPOILERS 1 13 May 01, 2016 12:44AM  
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Anna Sewell was a kind and generous woman whose great love for horses and desire to see them better treated resulted in the most celebrated animal story of the nineteenth century.

Born into a strict Quaker family who lived at Great Yarmouth in Norfolk, she was brought up to believe in the importance of self-reliance, moral responsibility and 'tender consideration for the Creatures of God'. From an
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More about Anna Sewell...

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“It is good people who make good places.” 1508 likes
“If they strain me up tight, why, let 'em look out! I can't bear it, and I won't.” 582 likes
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