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A Good Horse (Horses of Oak Valley Ranch, #2)
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A Good Horse (Horses of Oak Valley Ranch #2)

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  298 ratings  ·  45 reviews
When eighth grader Abby Lovitt looks out at those pure-gold rolling hills, she knows there’s no place she’d rather be than her family’s ranch—even with all the hard work of tending to nine horses. But some chores are no work at all, like grooming young Jack. At eight months, his rough foal coat has shed out, leaving a smooth, rich silk, like chocolate. As for Black George, ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published October 26th 2010 by Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2010)
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Jane Debano
Loved this book. It's a sequel to "The Georges and the Jewels" and continues the story of Abby Lovitt who lives on a horse ranch in California in the 1960's. She is now 13 and in 8th grade and continues her barn chores as well as daily riding the horses. She's decided to name one of the geldings Black George and he turns out to be a natural jumper. Her parents have decided to ask Jem Jarrow, a man who works with horses in a gentler, more intuitive way, to give her lessons. You might say Jarrow h ...more
Jan 30, 2013 Charissa marked it as not-for-me  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Charissa by: My sister's friend who gave her the book.
My sister keeps pointing out things that are wrong with this book. I picked it up just for fun, and believe me, she was right.

In my sister's words:
First of all, the author jumps right into stuff.
There's another horse series? I thought this was a stand alone!
Second, since when do teenage girls not care about anything? The closest to real emotions I saw was "It was fun."
Third, she seems not to care about the ponies. She keeps on mentioning her dad selling the ponies and not at all feeling sorry f
Ms. Yingling
Abby is used to losing horses to new homes, but this time she may lose two. Black George is showing so well that he is sure to sell if Abby can continue to make him look good in the ring. Jack, a horse she rescued, is the foal of a stolen mare, and may be taken away from her as well. Abby continues to struggle with fitting in with her friends at school, although she enjoys being part of a play reading group, even though her mother is a bit disapproving of reading Shakespeare. When it looks like ...more
I think I would have enjoyed this book more if I had it a few years ago and read the first book in the series first.
I was surprised at the literature quality of this book. Usually,modern children's series are written merely for entertainment and have little or no literature quality. But this series, written by a Pulitzer-prize winning author, had a refreshing style of writing and creativity. Not a lot of high-action and good for horse-lovers.
Lukas Austin
This book Is definitely a book for people that love horses This book is about amy lovett who loves on a ranch with her father and her mother. They have horses and horses only, In the first book " The georges and the jewels" They named all of the male horses george and all of the female horses jewel. In the this book which is the second book amy's father goes to oklahoma to get horses from the auctions. He comes back with this mare. Later they found out that she was pregnant when she foaled to he ...more
Stephanie A.
A nice follow-up to the first book, with mild elements of mystery and a much calmer and more close-knit relationship with both parents than I remember from said first book. I liked the additional showjumping detail and discussion of training her top two horses, Black Jumper and the foal, Jack. Also, I just learned this is a fully developed series and I am extremely excited to read more!
Abby has to deal with the possibility of two favorite horses leaving the farm: Black George, who Abby is discovering could become a high-level show jumper; and Jack, her beloved colt. Turns out Jack's dam may have been stolen and sold to Abby's father.

I felt like this story moved very slowly. There's a lot of detail about things like the courses Abby has to jump in shows that were boring. The religion of Abby's family seems like a strange sticking point for me; it isn't a major point in the sto
This is categorized as juvenile fiction, but it was more advanced than that. It was about a young girl (12 or 13?), but it really wasn't juvenile in content. If you really like horses, you would like this book. I kind of skimmed over the descriptions of the jumps and other horsey things. After reading it, I discovered that there was a previous book about this family. I may try to find that and read it. I was interested in the religious aspect of the book. This family is very religious, goes to c ...more
A great read. If you love horses like me then this is the book for you.
This book will be absolutely perfect for kids who can't get enough horse stories, since there is lots of horse talk, horse shows, and horsemanship in this book. Abby, the main character, shows small glints of interesting features but is overall kind of flat, and more of a vehicle for experiencing the horses. For those reasons I was totally and completely bored while reading this book. However, in the hands of a horse-crazy middle-grade reader it's a fantastic book, and I will definitely keep buy ...more
A good book if you are interested in horses
I had sworn off Jane Smiley. I'd read and liked her 'Thousand Acres' but HATED 'Barn Blind' which left me depressed for days. However, I like to keep my foot in the Young Adult genre and this was available on Kindle from our local library. I was pleasantly surprised. She handles the characters well and the underlying plot line is a bit of a mystery right until the end. I'm not sure if it has enough action to captivate today's teen/pre-teen crowd, but the horsey set will like it.
Audience: This is a great book for serious horse lovers as well as people of all ages interested in what daily ranch life if like. It is also a good book for a teacher looking for a higher level book to teach character development.

Appeal: The characters and the realistic horse situations draw horse lovers of all ages into this book. The horse lingo and the multi-level relationships keep readers wondering and hoping the whole way through.
Sally Jordan
This denfinatly is a book for horse lovers! This book is about about a teenage girl, Abby Lovitt who lives on a horse ranch. In this book Abby Falls head over heels for a colt named Jack, Jacks mom died and now the people who owned his mother want him back. Abby is going to do everything that she can to stop them. If you want to know what happens to Jack I suggest you read this book! Jane Smiley is a great author.
This is the kind of horse book I gobbled up a kid. Although not billed as a sequel, it picks up right where Smiley's THE GEORGES AND THE JEWELS left off, and I enjoyed this one even more. With lots of details about jumping, and a plot that deals with the possible loss of not just one, but two of the main character's favorite horses, it's a great read. Horse lovers of all ages will enjoy this one.
I love this new serise I started. When I read the first book last year I didn't realize there were others to read too. The only confusing part of the book is when the little girl explanes about which order of jumps she has to do and a couple of them you jump them then turn around and jump them again. My eyes were hurting just trying to keep up with the jumps.
Great story about a girl on a working horse farm, her relationships with her family, friends, and of course, the horses. Jane Smiley clearly knows horses, and her writing rings true in all things equine. Would recommend for not only young teens interested in horses, but any adult who enjoys Smiley's superb writing.
Oooh, this became a series! When did this happen?

I didn't like this book quite as much as I liked the first one, but I still found it very well done. The aspects of religion, both Abby's family's and others, continue to be handled deftly and without judgment. Recommended best for early teen readers.
Jun 11, 2014 Ally added it
It's a sweet story, extremely well written. If I was a thirteen year old girl it might be my favorite book.
Overall, I enjoyed A Good Horse because I have been a horse person my whole life and own horses myself. I was able to understand what was going on when it came to technical stuff. But in order to really enjoy this book, you'd have to be VERY into horses. It was good though.
awww, i so related to this. not the having the really nice horses part, but abby herself.

though i am sad that they make their money buying and selling horses. did you know the average horse goes through 6 or more owners in their lifetime? it makes me sad for black george.
Leslie Wahlquist
I really enjoyed this book. It's an easy read (intended for teens) -- and as a horse lover, its detail about horses and riding really brought the characters and the story to life. If you love horses --- you'll love this book.
Shelby :p
I am reading this book right ow, and its kind of just free fealing while yor reading it, because i cant help but visualize where the girl lives with all the open land and horses and cattle, i woul LOVE to live there
A children's horse book, that I loved as an adult. I don't know if kids would like it as well as I do. Those of you who have children let me know their reactions to the book.
It finished much better than I thought it would. It started out a little preachy and a bit technical (as far as the riding jargon went). Overall a very good story, though.
Wonderful story. I loved horse books as a child. I'm delighted to find Jane Smiley creating more and with such full characters. A very worth while read.
Abby's story continues as she trains a jumper for sale and explores the mystery of the colt who was born on her farm the previous year.
Janey Bennett
This is a sequel and suffers from a weakened plot carrying over details from the earlier book. Didn't quite work.
Though i love horses and was pleased with the first book in this series... I didn't quite like this one...
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Jane Smiley is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist.

Born in Los Angeles, California, Smiley grew up in Webster Groves, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis, and graduated from John Burroughs School. She obtained a A.B. at Vassar College, then earned a M.F.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. While working towards her doctorate, she also spent a year studying in Iceland as a Fulbright Scholar
More about Jane Smiley...
A Thousand Acres Moo Horse Heaven The Sagas of Icelanders Private Life

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