Monday, 23 June 2014

Review: Appaloosa Summer

Title: Appaloosa Summer
Series: Island Trilogy #1
Author: Tudor Robins
Published by: Tudor Robins on June 15th 2014
Genre: Contemporary
Format: Kindle
Source: Netgalley
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Check it out on Goodreads

*I received a copy of this book free from the author via Netgalley for review consideration, this in no way affects my opinion of the book.*

Goodreads Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Meg Traherne has never known loss. Until the beautiful, talented horse she trained herself, drops dead underneath her in the show ring.

Jared Strickland has been living with loss ever since his father died in a tragic farming accident.

Meg escapes from her grief by changing everything about her life; moving away from home to spend her summer living on an island in the St. Lawrence River, scrubbing toilets and waiting on guests at a B&B.

Once there, she meets Jared; doing his best to keep anything else in his life from changing.

When Jared offers Meg a scruffy appaloosa mare out of a friend’s back field, it’s the beginning of a journey that will change both of them by the end of the summer.

My Thoughts: It's been a while since I have read a horsey book, so when I saw this, I had to read it and now I want to pull on my old boots, zip up my chaps and go find a horse to ride.

This book had me crying from the start and as a horse lover myself, I felt Meg's loss and understood that losing such an intergral part of you changes how you look at your life. I liked that she didn't throw a pity party for herself but moved on while still feeling the loss of her companion. I really liked Meg and I felt that she was a realistic and relatable character who I would love to go out on a ride with.

Another character I really liked is Jared, a hot cowboy - not the bronco riding type but the tractor driving type. I liked that he allowed Meg her grief for her horse even while he is grieving for his dad, when he tells Meg that "grief isn't a competitive sport", was the moment I knew he was a keeper. I liked how he was written to be really affected by the loss of his father, one way this was shown was through his anxiety.

The romance between Meg and Jared was sweet and developed nice and slowly. The romance wasn't the main focus of the story or their relationship, the focus was on how they, as friends, help each other to come to terms with their loss and to move on.

You can tell that it is written by an actual equestrian, it's hard to find horse stories that stick to reality. There were only a couple scenes that made me shake my head a little bit, but they weren't deal breakers or completely unrealistic, just a bit rare.

Aside from the death of her horse at the start and the strained relationship with her mother, everything went smoothly for Meg. I kept expecting something to happen to create conflict, maybe even an atagonist to appear, that would shake the story up a bit, but that didn't happen. Again, this was no deal breaker because I throughly enjoyed the story and sometimes it is nice to read one where everything works out and you like all the characters.

The story put me right on this beautiful island with these wonderful people and I didn't want to leave and as I was getting to the end I was thinking 'no I don't want to leave' and 'I hope it has a sequel'. When I finished I noticed that yes, it is the first in a trilogy, Yay! I will most certainly be picking up the next one.

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