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One Hundred and Four Horses Hardcover – 15 Aug 2013


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: William Collins (15 Aug 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007477554
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007477555
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.6 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 171,371 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

‘The dramatic narrative of their dangerous journey … gives this epic its nail-biting edge. The horses, each with its own character, are the stars’ The Times

‘Brutally honest and often grisly, One Hundred and Four Horses […] remains a powerful story of loss, desperation and, above all, hope. More than just a memoir, […] the story is gripping, moving and disturbing all at once.’ Horse and Hound

About the Author

Mandy Retzlaff grew up in Ghana before moving to what was then Rhodesia. She married her husband Patrick in 1978, and in 1980 they took up farming. After being forced to hand over their Farm to the Zimbabwe War Veterans Association in 2000, they eventually fled across the border to Mozambique, rescuing horses from other evicted farmers along the way. The Retzlaffs run a horse safari company on the Mozambique coast, taking tourists on rides through the wild and wonderful country that they now call home.


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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Ms. Wendy Whitmore on 19 Aug 2013
Format: Hardcover
This is beautifully and flawlessly written account of a remarkable journey, the bond between man and beast, and gritty survival. 'We need to make a plan',is this extraordinary family's mantra. I could not put this book down and read it over 2 sittings. The only reason I stopped in the first session was because I had run out of tissues.

If you love horses, love Africa, love Zimbabwe, or simply enjoy a good story, well told, then this book is for you.

Be warned however, There are some dreadful accounts of cruelty which have however been sensitively handled by the author.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Steph on 5 Sep 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful story about some incredible people and some extra special horses. Mandy and Pat's positivity and courage in the face of some awful circumstances is inspiring and beautifully retold in this fantastic book. I have never actually laughed out loud or cried whilst reading a book, but '104 horses' made me do both several times over. I am a 'horsey' person and am very interested in Africa but I genuinely believe that anyone can enjoy this book - it is very informative but pitched at the right level for all backgrounds. It is a very raw, honest account of some brutal events but please read this book, you won't regret it!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By C. Hawkes TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 4 Sep 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I've never been a horsey person, so was a little sceptical when I started reading. However, doubts were quickly dispelled as I was carried away by Mandy Retzlaff's descriptions to her home in Zimbabwe. This immediately helped me to empathise with her pain on being forced to leave the home and life she and her family had created.

The insight into a personal experience of the sufferings of Zimbabwe at the hands of its political masters was a powerful one. But most of all, the determination of the Retzlaffs to salvage something from the wreckage of a country being asset-stripped was awe-inspiring. One Hundred and Four Horses will remain with me: a wonderful read and a wonderful true-life story.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Beanie Luck TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 Nov 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have recommended this book to all my friends and family and all the 100 people that are in one of my groups.

I have never in my life read a book that has affected me so deeply.

This book is based on a true story but i deliberately never read other peoples reviews on books, i much prefer to make up my own ind and too many people include spoilers which i despise.

Anyway, a family are ousted from their family farm in Zimbabwe by tyrant dictator Robert Mugabe and they set off on a journey to a new life amassing horses as they go.

They take in other peoples horses along the way, struggling not only to feed the horses but themselves.

At a terrible stage in the journey they have to make the heartbreaking decision to decide which horses they will continue to take with them and which ones they will leave to die.

I cannot post anymore of the story because you really should read it for yourself.

I sobbed, like a 2 year old, tears streaming down my face, chest racking sobs that i haven't experienced since the notebook, yes i am a sap.

This would make a remarkable film, im thinking Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood, that's how i see it in my head anyway.

If Clint directs this, bot oh boy im thinking Oscar winning..

A truly remarkable book that will continue to make an impression on me my whole life..
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Klepper on 23 Aug 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I know of Mandy and Pat - I had lived in Zimbabwe - from 2001 through to 2003 I sent a daily newsletter of media reports taken from the main news reports of the Farm Invasions, showing what what the world was being old of "Resettling Landless Blacks"...by stealing them from commercial farmers who made Zimbabwe the "breadbasket of Africa"! As houses, school and clinics were destroyed, farm-workers, both black and white were left destitute, homeless, helpless.
Now, with 40% of all farms in the hands of Mugabe's cronies, this heartbreaking, yet life-affirming account of one family's true grit emerges to show the world the evil of this man and his regime.
Heartbreaking, with laugh out loud moments, it is thought-provoking and full of love...and none of the bitterness you'd expect. It is full of hope, even when you wonder how someone could ever carry on...How would you deal with it if you were forced from your home, your friends, your life...saw pets massacred and friends threatened, hurt, left helpless? If you could do it with even a smidgen of the elan and selflessness (not to mention the sense of humour) of the Retzlaff clan...then you'd be a better person than I!
You don't have a love Africa or horses to be moved by this incredible true story. In my view it is a Hollywood Blockbuster begging to be made!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By James Maberly on 21 Oct 2014
Format: Hardcover
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It is captivating from beginning to end and what becomes so inspiring is the passion with which Mandy and Pat continue to look after their horses when, frankly, there was virtually nothing more than goodwill to keep them going. Like ‘Call of the Litany Bird’ by Susan Gibbs, this is much more than a story of determination, passion and survival: It is a beautifully written book. The art of writing about something so challenging and dramatic (and it was pretty dramatic most of the time) is in knowing just how much to write and how much to leave out and in determining how and where to start each part of the story. Mandy has done this so well. I believe she would make a brilliant novelist and I would encourage her to write more. She has a great gift.
Mandy, please don’t let this be your only book. I wish you all (and your horses) all the success and happiness you deserve.
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