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4.5 out of 5 stars
A HORSE CALLED SEPTEMBER
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 14 November 2005
A wonderful book about a childhood friendship between a farmers daugter and best friend, who's father works on the farm. Of course the star of the book is the horse, September, bought to win the top local jumping competion he causes a rift between both families when the daughter refuses to ride him any more after her affections are transferred to a new horse. September even after a terrible injury comes good to prove to his new owners that their faith in him was well deserved. I first read this book as an eleven year old and still twenty years later! I love nothing more than to curl up and reread it. This is a classic book and unlike some pony novels it really deals with the ups and downs of friendship and love of horses a must read for all "Jill and Jackie" followers
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 1 January 2015
This is a wonderful, wonderful horsey story which I discovered via a Kindle offer (and I'm so happy I did!!) Published in 1976, I can't think how this one evaded me when I was a child because I would have loved this story about friendship and horses (I was horsey mad as a child and this would have been the stuff that my pony-mad dreams were made of). So, Mary and Anna are great friends. Anna is the rich child of her landowning father and Mary is the poor daughter of the farmhand (an employee of Anna's Dad). They've grown up together and the difference between them in terms of what they have and have not got has never entered the equation before. Anna has a horse called September who she shares with Mary and it's all very happy and idyllic. UNTIL... Anna's Dad decides that Anna needs to go to a posh boarding school where horse-riding is on the syllabus and Mary is left behind. Suddenly, Mary is being treated like a groom/a hired hand to look after September, but she's not allowed to ride him at all. This is the story of how Anna changes and Mary struggles to regain their friendship and keep September. There's an awful lot about class in here and one can't help but get a bit annoyed with Mary who really does seem to "know her place" (as Anna, at one point, obnoxiously tells her she should do). After all, it's Mary who saves the day and when the inevitable happens and there's a rapid turnabout in their fortunes, Mary still seems anxious to stay as the working class underdog. Despite the fact that she has the power to change her life at this point, she just doesn't seem to see it.

That said, I LOVED this book - I read it in nearly one sitting because I just couldn't put it down. If you love horses, don't miss this one. I might even buy the other one ("Quicksilver") despite it being aimed at the 8 to 12 year old market. (I'm 42 - but you're never too old for a fabulous horsey story - once horse-mad, I reckon you'll always be that way...)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 13 November 2003
i read this book years ago for the 1st time, but i have read it many times since. this is the best book by anne digby. it is a very realistic story and very dramatic in places.i love this book and would recommend it to anybody!!!!!
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on 26 April 2015
Set in Devon you can let your child read this beautiful story with full confidence that she/he will not be reading anything she shouldn't. NO dirty/bad language or inappropriate scenes.

Chestnut Farm is owned by Anna's father, Mr. Dewar. Mary's father works as a cowman on the farm. Both Mary and Anna are only children and are the best of friends. Mr. Dewar sells the girls' ponies and buys the horse September, planning for Anna to get into the show jumping circuit. We then learn that Anna is to be sent to Kilmingdean boarding school - a very posh school for girls.

Mary continues to look after September but Mr. Dewar will not allow her to jump him, saying that he is going to do it himself. September does not like Mr. Dewar so many times will refuse to do some of the jumps. This makes Mr. Dewar mad so out comes the whip!

At first Anna writes home saying how much she misses Mary but over time Anna changes and in fact turns into a snob and spoilt brat! She is riding the horse King of Prussia at school and wins the Imperial Trophy. Mary, in the meantime, is determined to rebuild September's confidence so breaks the rules and jumps him herself. When Anna comes home from school she is furious with her father for not buying King of Prussia when he had the chance. She rides September the first day but doesn't want to jump Demon's Dyke. Her dad "forces" her and September stumbles, resulting in a sprain.

Mr. Dewar decides to sell his prized car in order to purchase King of Prussia and attempts to sell September but no one wants him. To Mary's horror, she sees September being transported off to the slaughter house. Mary cycles miles, pulls all her money out of savings in order to buy September back and save him from this fate. No one listens to her but someone comes to her rescue. Who is it?

Mary and Anna are now like complete strangers. Mary dyes September's fur so that no one will recognize him and works on getting him fit again. One day she meets Anna on the beach. Anna makes fun of her "broken down animal!" Mary decides she is going to enter the Western Counties Championship on September which is the same competition that Anna is riding King of Prussia. Who wins this race? What happens to the girls' friendship? Is it restored?

Read this beautiful story to find out how it all ends.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 4 June 2011
Really happy with the book, arrived really quicky in great condition. It was one of my favourite reads as a child and bought it to re-read. Happy memories!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I bought this kindle version as it was on offer and thought it would make good holiday reading for my daughter...I'd never heard of the author before. My daughter loved it...she was gutted to get to the end and immediately wanted to track down more titles by Anne Digby.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 5 February 2013
This was a fantastic, classic pony book filled with adventures and what a girl will do for the love of a horse. Right up there with the traditional Pullwin-Thompson sisters and Ruby Ferguson. Any horse lover whatever age should read this.
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on 3 August 2013
This was a charming and surprisingly riveting read. Charming because it's the sort of story that could be shared by all the family. Riveting, because I had to keep reading and find out what happened to September, and the friendship between Mary and Anna.
I loved the gentle message I found in the book...how important true friendship is!
I adore horses, and when young always wanted one of my own, so I could really relate to Mary. Reading this book brought back so many memories.
It's a lovely story.
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on 30 April 2014
Thought I would indulge in reading this story to take me back to my childhood when I lived and breathed horses, and this book fulfilled my expectations.

Totally predictable, full of teenage angst, parents with high expectations etc.........
But sweet story nonetheless and enjoyable - Oh to be young again and yearning for a pony of my own...........
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on 3 February 2014
I think I would have liked this book when I was younger, it was a nice feel-good, old-fashioned pony story! But it was all too good to be true, it was so unlikely - the things that happened in the book couldn't ever happen in real life- life's just not that good! I'd recommend it for pony mad girls aged about 10.
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