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Fritz and the Beautiful Horses
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Fritz and the Beautiful Horses

4.24 of 5 stars 4.24  ·  rating details  ·  821 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Fritz, a pony excluded from the group of beautiful horses within the walled city, becomes a hero when he rescues the children of the city.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 23rd 1981 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 1981)
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Fritz and the Beautiful Horses by Jan BrettThe Mitten by Jan BrettThe First Dog by Jan BrettTrouble with Trolls by Jan BrettThe Wild Christmas Reindeer by Jan Brett
Best of Jan Brett
1st out of 32 books — 7 voters
Black Beauty by Anna SewellThe Black Stallion by Walter FarleyKing of the Wind by Marguerite HenryMisty of Chincoteague by Marguerite HenrySeabiscuit by Laura Hillenbrand
Horse Books/Novels
121st out of 757 books — 423 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,145)
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Jan Brett is a hit-or-miss author/illustrator for me. Although I usually really enjoy her illustrations, and loved both story and pictures in some cases (Mossy, for example) sometimes her humans seem a bit "off" to me, or I don't connect with the story. So I was interested to read an early Brett with Fritz and the Beautiful Horses and I'm pleased to say I enjoyed it on the whole. Though I am a little tired of the underdog-having-to-become-a-hero-to-get-recognized storyline, I was happy that at l ...more
“Fritz and the Beautiful Horses” is another children’s book for the beautiful mind of Jan Brett and it is about how a not so pretty pony named Fritz proves to the haughty town of beautiful horses that anyone who has a good heart and is dependable can be beautiful no matter what. “Fritz and the Beautiful Horses” is definitely one of the best books about true beauty and courage that children will love for many years!

Two words to describe this book: beautiful and cute! Jan Brett has done an excelle
A great hero story, and the pony is very cute in the illustrations. The book has an older (time-wise, not age) feel to the story and the pictures. I love Jan Brett, but sometimes I think her stories might read too slowly for story time audiences. At least for an older one who are squirmy after a whole day of school. Perhaps I will Book Talk this one instead. It's too good to pass up. I was a little disappointed that the town didn't learn the greater part of the lesson on outer and inner beauty. ...more
I love Jan Brett's typical illustrations and busy borders that hint at what is to come. But with this sweet story of Fritz, a pony who is not beautiful or beloved by the townspeople, the simpler illustrations with more muted colors and more white space were perfectly suited to convey the emotions that Fritz experienced, the pride and haughtiness of the other horses, and the changing relationship between Fritz and the children. I think that this story can remind us that each of us has something v ...more
Sep 11, 2014 June rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: horse requests
Recommended to June by: Goodreads Childrens' Picture Group
Shelves: horses, picture-book
Fritz is excluded from the beautiful horses that are allowed in the city, however, he proves that deeds are more important than looks.
This book is about a horse who doesn't fit in with all the other elegant horses until the day he does a heroic act that saves all the children of the town. I liked this book because it shows that it's not how you look on the outside, but it's your actions that matter. I think this book has a good moral lesson for students, and with good discussion questions could develop a great discussion.
I was OBSESSED with this book when I was a kid. It is so so so so beautiful (duh, Jan Brett's the best). I think I liked how fancy the fancy horses are (so fancy!), and also how cute and scrappy Fritz is. My mother gave me a hardcover copy for my birthday a few years ago and I totally love it just as much as I did when I was little.
Tricia Douglas
What a lovely Jan Brett story (and pictures)! I have read many of Jan Brett's books and enjoyed every one. This book is no exception. The story is wonderful. A little pony is excluded from the other village horses because he is not beautiful. Brett makes us love this little pony even more when he shows his true nature by rescuing the children of the village from a cracking bridge. This book was written back in 1981 and I think shows more freedom of illustrations than those where she uses her bor ...more
Nicholas Linsk
This book’s illustrations are full of color and the artwork sparkles in every detail throughout the book. This story is a sure-footed pony who finally gets the chance to shine in his own best way. Brett uses very close attention to detail as shown in the drawing of the horses. The horses are drawn so well that you can see the different structures of how the horses are built, the facial features look lifelike, as well as the different coats of the horses in the story. For example you can clearly ...more
Kimberly Hall
This is a very sweet story about a pony, Fritz, who wants to be accepted by the townspeople who only like beautiful, graceful horses. Fritz shows his importance by helping in a emergency and wins the hearts of the children.

I am a huge fan of Jan Brett and love the detailed illustrations in all of her books. This book is no different. I love the Eastern European feel to the book and the folklore style of the story. The only reason I didn't give this book 5 stars, was that I really missed the full
Sarah Adamson
5* for the illustrations and 2* for the ending to the story. An interesting story about a town that only permits beautiful horses. When there is danger, the ugly pony saves the day. My concern is that pony then is allowed in the city but they haven't learned their lesson about exclusion or about true beauty!!
Fun and gentle but didn't like the ending!
Just read this to my nephew. He was only interested because the main character's name was Fritz. I would say that the book is specifically for big fans of horses. That was the best part of the book. The story felt like it was written as an excuse to draw horses.
Ms Threlkeld
Maybe reading a stack of Brett's book all at one time isn't wise. I'm finding most of her prose boring and the stories themselves lack excitement. Not even the illustrations for this book are up to her standard.
Certainly a pretty book. I'm actually relieved it didn't have the busy border of Brett's more famous works - they do lend themselves to rereads, but I, personally, was glad to be able to see white space and a cleaner page.

I agree with Kathryn's assessment of the story 100%. Go 'like' it here:
Sep 05, 2014 Dolly rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Shelves: 2014, childrens
This is a nice tale about the importance of what's on the inside that counts, not what's on the outside.

The illustrations are nicely detailed, but quite different from the typical Nordic scenes we're used to from Jan Brett. It's a must for horse fans and we enjoyed reading this book together.

This book was selected as one of the books for the September 2014 - Horses discussion at the Picture-Book Club in the Children's Books Group here at Goodreads.
The story was good and interesting. Predictable in the way that children's books are. The illustrations were wonderful! So much detail. The texture and depth just fantastic.
Claudia Bell
Beautiful illustrations and a delightful story make this book very attractive for any young horse lover.
This is a lovely book for children and a charming tale for adults as well; I bought it years before I had a child. This story tells the true secret of horses; handsome is as handsome does. Those of us who have spent many years working with horses understand the true beauty of a homely equine with intelligence, patience and a kindly heart. I now have a young daughter who I have given this book to, and it is one of her favorites. She is starting riding lessons this summer and I am shopping for pon ...more
Good story with a good moral...and the pictures are soooo well done.
A.M. Supinger
As a child, this was my absolute favorite book. I can remember hiding in the library in elementary school, crying, just flipping through the pictures and wishing I was Fritz.
i freaking love this book soo much. my mother found it when i was little but i coudlnt find it the other day when i was looking for it. she said that our cat at the time destroyed it. i went back to college all sad and then it came in the mail! she had found a new copy online! YAYY the internets! haha
but anyway, i love everything about this book, down to its size. the pictures are gorgeous and insipiring. the story line is satisfying and teaches good lessons. i cant explain to you how much i lov
i read this as a child its cute
One of my favorite books as a child!
Fritz has been a family favorite of ours for years. We all love the beautiful. Intricate illustrations (of horses!), and the sweet underdog story has a great message.
This is my FAVORITE book by Jan Brett. The illustrations of the horses are amazing (horses are VERY hard to draw. My mom (the elementary school librarian) bought this book for Lindsey. She said one of the teachers at her school wrote to Jan, telling her how much her kids like her stories. Jan wrote her back and told her how she comes up with the stories and her inspirations. I thought that was great! I immediately went to the library and checked out The Hat and The Mitten....both wonderful!
Jan Brett is another of my favorite illustrators, and I love her illustrations for this book. This story is one of her simpler, shorter stories, with a universal theme: the unlovely underdog becomes hero. Her horses are so elegant, and beautifully proportioned, and little Fritz is so cute and chubby with short legs. As someone else pointed out, the illustrations in this book are not framed in borders, as is so common in her other books, so the illustrations do seem to flow along.
Aug 26, 2013 Anna rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: horses
I must have read this to my kids a hundred times - it still makes me well up. In a good way. It is such a sweet and beautifully drawn - if slightly twee but it is meant for the twee phase of childhood - plea for choosing the appropriate mount for children that it really deserves a medal. Anyone looking for a present for a horse mad little girl aged 3 to 6 (although my 8-year-old still loves it): this is a superb choice.
Chloe Dryke
This is a great picture book that is also about self image and confidence in who you are. A great story with a great moral! Plus the illustrations are THE BEST. I obviously am biased about a story with ponies, but this story can be a confidence booster for students who may be experiencing feelings of inadequacy, Fritz exhibits that everyone has an inner talent.
I had this book as a child, or else it was a favorite to check out at the library. Fantastic book. I found it randomly one day while subbing, and read it to a class whose teacher was running late. I hadn't seen it in years, but it was just as great as I remember it. Everyone loved it! It was so much fun.
This is a lovely story. It's a Jan Brett book so you know the illustrations are wonderful.

In this story we learn how everyone is special and everyone has a purpose. And the little guy is the hero. My kids love to listen to it and I like to read it. One of the better stories out there for kids.
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With over thirty three million books in print, Jan Brett is one of the nation's foremost author illustrators of children's books. Jan lives in a seacoast town in Massachusetts, close to where she grew up. During the summer her family moves to a home in the Berkshire Hills of Massachusetts.
As a child, Jan Brett decided to be an illustrator and spent many hours reading and drawing. She says, "I reme
More about Jan Brett...
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