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Black Beauty

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  250,325 ratings  ·  5,274 reviews
Black Beauty is a perennial children's favourite, one which has never been out of print since its publication in 1877. It is a moralistic tale of the life of the horse related in the form of an autobiography, describing the world through the eyes of the creature. In taking this anthropomorphic approach, the author Anna Sewell broke new literary ground and her effective sto ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published September 7th 2018 by Wordsworth Editions (first published November 24th 1877)
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Foxsay123 No Black Beauty didn't like London because his owner there we very cruel.…moreNo Black Beauty didn't like London because his owner there we very cruel.(less)
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Average rating 3.96  · 
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Ahmad Sharabiani
Black Beauty, Anna Sewell

Black Beauty is an 1877 novel by English author Anna Sewell. It was composed in the last years of her life, during which she remained in her house as an invalid. The novel became an immediate best-seller, with Sewell dying just five months after its publication, but having lived long enough to see her only novel become a success. With fifty million copies sold, Black Beauty is one of the best-selling books of all time.

The story is narrated in the first person as an autob
Black Beauty by Anna Sewell is a beautiful story meant for older children or very young adults. It was written in the 19th century by a woman who passed away shortly after its publication. I enjoyed the story and have given it a 3 of 5 stars, which is still very good in my book.

A few interesting things:

1. The point of view in the book is from Black Beauty, the horse.
2. It takes place in London nearly 150 years ago.
3. It's still a cherished story for both pleasure reading and ed
Aug 03, 2007 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
Sep 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

I had never actually owned a copy of this wonderful classic until very recently when I spotted this one well worn and loved in a house clear out of a relative and when I was asked if there was anything I would like to take as a memento I was so happy to give a home to this stunning book. Black Beauty was always out on loan from my school library and as a child I remembering cons
Apr 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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 messag

Robin Hobb
Feb 24, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Thoughtful children and yes, adults.
This was one of my very first 'horse' books. I read it when I was nine or ten, and it left a deep impression on me.

Told from the viewpoint of the horse, it starts with Beauty's gentle upbringing and careful training. Well cared for and well mannered, Beauty is a valued animal with a good life at first. But a mishap or two is all it takes for Black Beauty to begin a downward spiral into a world where the appearance of an animal matters far more than its comfort, and into the depths where the onl
Sidharth Vardhan
Okay it had started as a review but it ended up becoming something totally different. It is rather dark, you have been warned.

"In Defense of Cannibalism"

"I think the story starts when, as a kid, I was a neighbor of this family of slaughterers for a short while and, though they did their work within walls of their house, still sitting inside our home, we could hear the cries of goats, full of pain, as they were being slaughtered. These cries would go on for several minutes. It was unbearable for
Dec 26, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Jun 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: most-loved
I think this was my first 'favourite book'.

I've read it over and over again, and I still cry every single time, at so many different points. It's such a beautiful book and I always feel it so deeply. The way some people treat animals (and each other) can be appalling. On the other hand, some people can be incredibly wonderful, the kind of person we all should want to be, and hopefully know (this applies to both the book and life in general of course). Black Beauty's life has a great many ups and
Mike (the Paladin)
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
Sep 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my favorite book growing up as a child. I was obsessed with horses and living in a barn. Black Beauty was the ultimate fan-girl horse book and I ate it up as a little girl. Revisiting this as an adult was equally impactful.

I teared up multiple times as I re-lived Beauty and the slew of his bad owners, his poor knees and despite it all his good, tender heart. This is my favorite animal character in any book and Beauty still has a beloved space that I'll cherish in my soul. This book sti
Anna Sewell's evocative, poignant and yes, often devastatingly brutal autobiography of a horse, her 1877 Black Beauty, is a novel which even though I very much and dearly cherish and appreciate (and consider it even a personal favourite), I am also glad to have first read as an adult, and NOT as a child. For with horses being amongst my favourite animals, particularly Black Beauty's many many trials and tribulations, his often neglectful and at times even deliberately cruelly abusive grooms and ...more
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
Debbie Zapata
Jul 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: saturdaymx
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).

The story follows Black Beauty from his days as a foa
Jan 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A timeless story that should be required reading for everyone, whatever the age. When this book was written, horses were used for every kind of pleasure and work, and were part of most upper class households. Many thought of them the way we think of cars, vehicles there for our use and disposable when they no longer meet our requirements. These, however, are sentient creatures, with needs and feelings, and Sewell wrote a moving and informative piece in their behalf.

Who would not fall in love wit
Lisa  (not getting friends updates) Vegan
Aug 28, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone 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
DNF 50%
i love horses but sorry i can't
¸¸.•*¨*•♫ Mrs. Buttercup •*¨*•♫♪
“I hope you will grow up gentle and good, and never learn bad ways; do your work with a good will, lift your feet up well when you trot, and never bite or kick even in play.”

This book was such a pleasant surprise! I did not expect it to be such a page-turner. With its short, straight-to-the-point chapters; the didactic yet never preachy writing style, the clean prose, and the beautiful characters, it made an amazing quick read that will definitely stay in my mind for quite some time. According
Very cute story and who wouldn't enjoy a story told from point of view of a horse. It brings animal abuse to the light of day which is a good thing. ...more
Black beauty is one of the most sensitive and heartfelt animal stories I have read. Being an autobiography of a horse, Black Beauty exposes the suffering of horses due to the thoughtless and cruel conduct of humans and advocates the need for their overall welfare. It is said that what inspired Anna to write the only book she ever wrote was to create social awareness of the suffering of horses and to induce to treat them with kindness, compassion and understanding.

Although the story is focused o
Merphy Napier
May 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, four-stars
I'm not sure this is a book I would rave about, but it is one I'm happy to have read. While I wasn't a fan of reading from the horses perspectives, it served it purpose and by the end I was really feeling for them. I learned a lot and I'll be thinking about this for a long time. ...more
Jenny Baker
I remember owning this book as a child. It's nice to revisit childhood classics and enjoying them just as much as an adult. ...more
Feb 13, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of 19th century fiction; kids with good reading skills
Shelves: books-i-own, classics
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
Barry Cunningham
Sep 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in my very early teens and loved it, it was a classic then and a classic now, beautifully written it just fires up a young persons imagination and evokes emotions. If you have not read this book then you must.
I read this as a child, many years ago. All I remember is that I loved the story, and wanted my mom to read it to me at least once a month.
Nadin Adel
Black beauty is the only book written by Anna Sewell. I bought this book may be 17+ years ago, when I used to read illustrated and abridged versions of literature. Later on I deduced that would leak out the story's essence and turn it into complete fragility.

However, the story here is more of an annoyance to me. It is a story of a horse's life. I believe we cannot learn lessons from a horse's life as they are not humans and are not created for the same reasons we are created for.

I understand the
When you're growing up in the 1880's, nothing beats the traditional Liberal education. The important features you ought to be learning about your world around you shouldn't only be the plight of orphans in the streets or the seedy underbelly of our overcrowded and filthy cities.

You need to be aware of animal cruelty.

In particular, you need to be aware that if you mistreat your horses, they will not be able to write effectively on their typewriters.

Do not assume these are all ghostwritten. There
You may read online here.

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).

Nov 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lessons learned from this book: people are shit. *lol* Nothing new or groundbreaking but maybe readers back then (1877) thought differently. In any case, Anna Sewell found a marvellous way to show humans just how dreadful they can be - through the eyes of an animal.

This is the life story of a horse that has had many names. The first of those names was Black Beauty. He was born from a long line of fine horses, growing up in a wonderful place but eventually being sold. Many different things happen
Jun 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-read
4,5 Stars

A lovely read, although very hard in parts. Even though there's plenty of happy moments there's also abuse and I teared up in the end.
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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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