Tag Archives: Children’s books

Chasing Dreams

Timber Ridge Riders (5)
Author: Maggie Dana
Pageworks Press
Published: 27.04.2013

Amazon.co.uk || Waterstones.com


Chasing Dreams is a facepaced story where we continue to follow Kate in her live at Timber Ridge. Occasionally the narrative is a little confusing, as it is not always clear that the action is told from Kate’s point of view, which makes it hard to follow the story. Though as soon as the narrative gets straight again it is easy to fit the confusing parts in.
The story is engaging and gives everyday challenges that a fourteen-year-old is likely to challenge. The antagonist (Angela) tend to be two-dimensional and not very well-rounded. I would have liked to see some deeper development of Angela, and maybe see why she behaves the way she does. Angela’s nice little sister casts some light on how the life is in that family, but Angela still lack depth.
Again the issue with Skywalker (Angela’s horse) never being ridden is an issue, as a horse that is not trained can not perform. Though this is shed a light on in this book as it is mentioned that Liz (the stable’s owner/trainer) is the only one, apart from Angela, allowed to riding him.
This book also shed some more light on Kate’s father, as in previous installments he has more or less been absent. He was painted as a strict and eccentric father figure, but he soon changed into a good a caring father. Which was very nice to see.

My only persistent issue with the book series is that the cover continue to have a brown horse, while Kate’s horse is palomino (Golden fur with white mane and tail).

Overall I did very much enjoy reading this book, and as an older child/young teenager I would have enjoyed it even more.

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Pretend Friends (book review)

pretend friendsA story about schizophrenia and 
other illnesses that can cause 
hallucinations 
Author: Alice Hoyle
Jessica Kingsley Publishers
Published: 21.02.2015
Amazon.co.uk || Waterstones.com

“Pretend Friends” paints a good picture of psychosis, what it is and how it works. It is written in simple words and uses “pretend friends” as a simile, which makes it easier for a child to relate to and understand the subject.
The story is short but it still gives a lot of information, both for the adult and the child. The child’s pretend friends and the “pretend friends” that portray adults are drawn differently as to better distinguish between the two (without making the latter one look scary).

Also the book features and introduction for adults as well as a F&Q at the end with questions that children might ask after reading the book. The F&Q is very informative as well as being formulated in a way that a child also can understand (with some help from an adult).

I did really enjoy this book and I would also like to see more of these kind of stories to explain other mental illnesses. As the lack of understanding of mental illnesses is evident in out society, I think we could hugely benefit from more books like this one.

All royalties earned by this book goes to support rething.org and their work with mental illnesses!

Wish Upon a Horse

Timber Ridge Riders (4)
Author: Maggie Dana
Pageworks Press
Published: 11.01.2013





The book is easy to read and will be a joy for younger readers. It is a lovely little story about two best friends and their lives at the stable. For Some reason it did remind me of the Saddle Club. I’ve been a rider for several years, and I did enjoy this book. It was sweet and funny and it had some suspense. It kept me reading. Though there are some issues in the book I have problems with: why would Liz not see that Tapestry was a great horse just because she was a little dirty? I understand she was underweight and such, but she proves to be a strong young horse, and a experienced horse-person would see that despite the dirt. Also I thin the romance is a bit malplaced, it was cute and all, but in the end the “superstar” was not really needed in the book at all, he did not affect the action in any way.. Third, if Skywalker was only ridden occasionally, his physic would falter and he would be in no shape to compete, and even though Angela came to the stable and rode him a few weeks before each show, he would not be able to become a top horse in that time. Also there is no such thing as a “Grand Prix” outfit for dressage riders. On a side note I did also have an issue with how the shows ran and how they were set up, but I figure that they were A) made that way to benefit the story, or B) that kind of shows are normal in the author’s district/country.

Other than that I found the book very enjoyable, it was a fast read and it was easy to follow the action.

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Coraline is one of my favorite books, it definitely lands inside the top 10. Neil Gaiman is an incredible author who creates his world in a way you just have to believe; no matter what he write, he gives it life.

Coraline is a book I read over and over, and I watch the movie again and again.

The book is about a girl who moves into a new apartment with her parents. Her parents is authors and they don’t really pays attention to their daughter, so when she discovers a magical door and comes to a new world where everything is perfect; of course she wants to stay. On the other side of the door she meets The Other mother, The Other Father and “the other”-everyone. The only one who remains the same is a cat which can talk in the other world. Things gets chaotic when Coraline discovers that The Other Mother is evil.

Coraline is a book everyone should read at least once in their life, even for them self, for their children or as a child themselves.