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Last Chance Mustang: The Story of One Horse, One Horseman, and One Final Shot at Redemption

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  194 ratings  ·  54 reviews
Last Chance Mustang is the story of Samson, a formerly free-roaming, still wild-at-heart American mustang that was plucked from his mountainous Nevada home and thrown into the domestic horse world where he was brutalized and victimized. After years of abuse, Samson had evolved into a hateful and hated, maladjusted beast until the day he found his way to a rural Illinois ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published June 23rd 2015 by St. Martin's Press
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Average rating 4.22  · 
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 ·  194 ratings  ·  54 reviews

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Jul 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I bought the Kindle version and read it in 3 days. I throughly enjoyed the book, well written. The book not only gave excellent insight to why horses act the way they do, but also how harmful the BLM is to Mustangs. I was but a young girl in the early 70's and was so thrilled to hear about how the BLM was going to "protect" the Mustangs. Boy were we fooled. Unfortunately there are a lot of abusive horse owners in the world, most I believe are due to pure ignorance. This book will educate as well ...more
Mar 04, 2016 rated it it was ok
I enjoyed the story about the horse more than I did the story about the man. Maybe it was the audio narrator or maybe it was much more than that. Samson, the horse, had a hard life and needed to be domesticated. This story mentioned wild mustangs and the abuse of these animals, and I feel it needed to be told, but I had a hard time with the trainer. This didn't seem to be well written or maybe the editor needed a stronger hand...I don't know, but it didn't work for me. There was a lot of ...more
Mar 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book was very touching. I never expected it to make me laugh and sob. The author does a beautiful job describing the special relationship between himself and Samson the very deeply troubled horse. I also learned a lot about the "American Wild West" through this book. Chapter 7 detailed the horrendous ways Mustangs were (and probably still are) treated during capture. I lost sleep after reading that chapter. Overall, this was a very moving book and anyone who appreciates animals and the ...more
Nancy Luebke
Feb 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: goodreads
This is a must read for horse lovers in America. This non-fiction story is written by an experienced horse trainer dealing with a last chance Mustang and the history of wild horses across the country. He gives an eye opening and fact filled history of many of these wild horses that many of us have not heard about.
Lorna McCluskey
Mar 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Horse-lovers
Having been an amateur horse-trainer many decades ago, I truly enjoyed this book that I received through Goodreads Giveaways.
I admire Mitchell Bornstein for becoming involved with an abused horse like Samson. I think if I had been Amy I would have decided to let Samson live the way nature intended, though in a much smaller, restricted range. This is not a "how-to" book, but an interesting blend of a unique inter-species relationship and history of the mustang.
Having experienced the same sort of
Kathy Church
Feb 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I just finished my arc of this book and it was very inspiring. It took me to a world that I know very little about. What a great book and author. The compassion for Samsom shows what a truly wonderful person Mitchell Bornstein is. Samsom was very lucky to have Mr. Bornstein as a trainer.
Sep 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Fascinating account of Mr. Bornstein's attempt to train (and his partial success - Samson will always be partly wild) a formerly wild, abused Mustang stallion named Samson. Interspersed with episodes of Samson's training are accounts of the catastrophic failures of the BLM, or the Bureau of Land Management, to manage the herds of wild Mustangs in the prairies of the Midwest and West. Mr. Bornstein repeats over and over that Samson could easily have been one of the horses killed cruelly and ...more
Feb 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I won this book on Goodreads

Last Chance Mustang is a great book! I throughly enjoyed this book and will read it again in the very near future. If you are an animal lover this book is definetly a must read. Samson's story is both tragic and triumphant! A horse that saw the very worst of people and the best of a great man who knew he was worth saving. Samson never lost his great spirit of freedom and pride even through all the abuse he suffered. Samson story is inspiring. Mitchell Bornstein has
In truth, one third of the book is redundant. Bornstein would constantly repeat what he wrote page after page after page. What the book needed was a good editor, because the story is lovely. As it is, I'm not sure it's worth the time.
Clare O'Beara
May 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I'm giving this book five stars on the understanding that it's not for children.
Mitch met an adopted mustang, recently gelded at the age of twelve, called Samson. His owner Amy who ran a de facto animal sanctuary had been the violent - because much abused - horse's last hope. The book tells of how Mitch, who had managed to reclaim other stressed and difficult horses, decided he had to work with the mustang and save him. Every step took a long time and Mitch gradually worked out the sources of
Katie Harder-schauer
Mar 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book through the Goodreads First Reads giveaway program in the hopes that I would then post an honest review.

When I was younger, I went through a horse literature phase, reading Black Beauty, all of Marguerite Henry's Chincoteague books, and several (if not all) of the books in the Saddle Club series. I was kind of excited to briefly return to that obsession of my childhood. Last Chance Mustang did not provide a story similar to those from my childhood. It's a lot more
Jennifer Goins
Mar 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Mar 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a great book! It's an interesting mix of history, story, and training guide. I believe all equestrians should read, but any non equestrians may find some of it boring and/or can't understand everything. I learned a lot from the history and the training. I even used some of the training advise with my own horse! It will be one of my favorite books for a long time to come. I loved the quotes at the beginning of every chapter.
Mar 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was a solid 4.75 and Jennifer, Nancy and Kathy's ratings were all spot on and better than I could have done! Again, not typically my cup of tea but I really enjoyed it. Great job!! I won this great book on GoodReads and like I do with most my wins I will be paying it forward by giving my win either to a friend or library to enjoy.
Feb 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: brillant
Thank you good reads for letting me win this wonderful book. It was truly a story that touched your heart.
Samantha Osborne
Jun 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
i really loved this book so very well written
Jillian Getchell
Sep 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Do you like horses, or reading about them? Well if you do, or even if you don't, I recommend “Last Chance Mustang” by Mitchell Bornstein. This animal nonfiction book follows Samson, a wild mustang that was was chased and caught and brought from beautiful Nevada home surrounded by the horses that he grew up with. He was brutalized and severely abused for years until he found his home at a rural Illinois farm which was his last chance. Mitchell Bornstein’s job was to tame the “violent beast” and ...more
Christie Bane
Apr 29, 2018 rated it liked it
This was another road trip audio book. There were things I really liked and things I didn't like, but overall it was an okay horse story.

What I did like:
*There was a lot of solid training information in there. This was the first time I really understood how someone teaches a horse to yield to pressure.
*The relationship between the author and Samson was pretty endearing. All trainers have had the problem animals suck them in at least a few times. But neither of them quit on the other one.

What I
Dec 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horsemanship
I "really liked it" all while I felt that the book could have been just as enjoyable and instructive at two-thirds the length. The author tended to elaborate on and on with much metaphor and simile, way past the point that, for me, separates illumination from the melodramatic. I also at times wearied of the parallel story of the historical plight of the wild Mustang horse, but I did come away with an increased awareness of the need to remain vigilant about how the BLM handles its charge to care ...more
Sep 24, 2018 rated it liked it
There was an over dramatization of Samson's abuse. We get it, you don't have to remind me every 3 pages how he was brutalized/mistreated/punished. I understand it was an important part of the book but it was just a little too juvenile how the author constantly reminded the reader. I also have zero sympathy for the author having little or no control over Samson's circumstances since he didn't own the horse or accept him as a gift. He could have potentially owned him but boarded him at Amy's farm ...more
Bonnie Staughton
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Being a horse lover and someone who thinks the Wild horses of the West are being badly mistreated due to Government greed, this book really SPOKE to me.

The author records his adventures and misadventures in training a Wild mustang named Samson who has been abused by the BLM and several previous owners who had no idea how to train a Mustang (or any horse) the correct way.

Throughout the story the author digresses to give the story of the Wild mustangs who are being hunted down by the BLM, the
Jan 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Samson, a wild American Mustang, was taken from his mountainous Nevada home and thrust into the domestic horse world where he suffered years of abuse. He ends up on an Illinois farm with a well-meaning owner who does not have the skills or experience to help him. Mitch Bornstein is contacted to work with Samson and give him one last chance. Although Mitch has years of experience working with challenging horses, Samson will push the boundaries of Mitch's knowledge, experience and heart. Woven ...more
Mary K Russell
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An Extraordinary Tale

Picking this book out of a list of books that were offered lived up to its advertising as something different. The author must posses an almost Divine insight and patience. The essence of Samson came through his writing. His attributes and character were revealed through his training and behavior.
I knew a little about the Mustangs and their treatment, but I had no idea of the viciousness that was directed their way. And how consistent and current it is. The details of that
Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Being a “horsey” person, I quite enjoyed this book.
It brought a mix of different things: story of a horse, history of the mustang, story of a man and his self reflection, history of the BML program, Amy’s story and all her animals as well as subtle training tips and many personalities within humans and pets.

Tracy Schulz
Feb 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Amazing book about an amazing relationship between a traumatized, horribly abused mustang and the man who eventually taught him about friendship, trust, and peace. Samson, the horse, also had mu h to teach. I also really appreciated that the author (Samson’s friend) interspersed with their story the history of the mustang. This book will make you sob, laugh, angry and grateful.
Eva Lynch
Feb 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Took me a bit to get this one read- but I enjoyed the story being told with the historical struggle of the Mustang intertwined- a story of real partnership between human and horse, and the on going struggle to preserve a living legend.
Patricia Gerhart
I loved this story.

Mitche!l has my forever admiration. I could not have made this happen . I own an OTm.mmmTB and I needed a trainers help to best of him going in a wonderful directin. He is amazing.
Thank God for men like Mitchell. I wish I could speak with

Teresa Bast
Jun 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I recommend this book to anyone who loves horses and wants to learn more about horses in the wild and what is happening to them.
Aug 23, 2018 rated it liked it
Listened to this but didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would.
I received in giveaways in exchange for an honest review. I was not in any way obligated to write a positive review.

Not the best horse book I have ever read but not the worse. Parts of the book is more of a history book than it is about a horse and a man trying to save him. Very hard to get into and follow because it jumps around when telling the stories, so you are not able to get a clear picture of what is going on during the horse's rehabilitation. If you just want highlights and get to the
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At the age of seven, Mitchell Bornstein jumped atop his first horse, and in the thirty-eight years since, he has pursued his life’s dream of working with damaged, abused, and difficult horses. College, law school, and nineteen years as a practicing attorney have not stood in the way as Mitchell has followed his passion and one true calling: to save the horses that no one else will.
From Illinois