Horse Diaries: Elska
Catherine Hapka, il. Ruth Sanderson
2009, Random House
I was foaled in early summer, in a meadow dotted with flowers. My first memory was the feeling of the warm sun on my back. I did not know it then, but in summer in
But by the time the long, dim twilight was half over, I was growing restless. I thought of my familiar herd and wanted to be with them. I wanted to see Amma as well. I missed the musical sound of her voice and the way she always found the itchiest spots on my crest and withers.
How horse and girl are reunited makes for a nice, low-key story, and the tone throught is reminiscent of Black Beauty. Appropriately, a quote from the classic starts the book;
Oh! if people knew what a comfort to horses a light hand is...
A higher-quality series book, but not especially memorable. Lovely drawings throughout enhance the sometimes pedestrian writing. The setting makes for an interesting background, and it's very instructive about the breed. I never knew Icelandic Horses came in so many colors, for one thing.
Silfra - mare
Elska - silver dapple/grey filly
Tappi - pinto colt
Perta - mare
Haddingur - stallion
Hamur - roan colt
Leira - cremello filly
Tyrta - palomino filly
Irpa - mare
Other Books in Series
Koda by Patricia Hermes, il. Ruth Sanderson (Quarter Horse in 1846 Missouri)
Yet to be published (Oct. 26, 2010)
Golden Sun by Whitney Sanderson, il. Ruth Sanderson (Appaloosa, 1790 Oregon)
Other books by Author
Hapka appears to be a prolific author who's written many beginner reader books, often linked to movies such as National Treasure and The Dark Knight. She's also written some YA chick lit. Other horse-related writing include an I Can Read! series called Pony Scouts, books based on the horsey TV series Wildfire, and a novelization of the film Flicka.
LinksRandom House Horse Diaries
Horse Diaries - an artist's journey (Ruth Sanderson blog)
Review of Horse Diaries: Elska at Blogcritics Books
Extremely helpful illustration of where Iceland is on the planet at Sunfilm Souvenirs
Random selection of Icelandic Horse souvenirs from Sunfilm
Iceland's national registry of the Icelandic Horse