Horse Mad Summer, by Kathy Helidoniotis

A thousand dollars. Wow! I’d never had a thousand dollars in my life. I’d never been near a thousand dollars. I’d never even seen a thousand dollars. And for someone who’d done as much fundraising as I had to save up for a horse of my own, that was saying something.

When Ashleigh hears about the prizes for winning the Waratah Grove Junior Cross-Country Riding Championships, she’s pretty excited. Almost as excited as she is about the approaching summer holidays. She is going to be spending it with her best friend Becky, and her other best friend Jenna, who is coming down from the city to stay for four whole weeks. What could be better than a horse-mad summer with her friends?

Soon, though, Ashleigh’s summer plans hit a rough patch. Jenna and Becky don’t seem to like each other – and Jenna doesn’t even like horse riding. Becky is picked to compete at the Championships and, although Ashleigh is pleased for her, she can’t help feeling disappointed. Will anything go right?

Horse Mad Summer is a horsy story that will appeal to all young horse-lovers but will also be enjoyed by those who aren’t ‘in’ to horses. Much more than a story about horses and riding, it is also full of action, adventure and the challenges of friendship.

This is author Kathy Helidoniotis’s second story featuring Ashleigh and her friends, however although those who read the first will be delighted to read the sequel, those who haven’t will not be lost. It stands alone as an entertaining read.

An excellent offering.

Horse Mad Summer, by Kathy Helidoniotis
Banana Books, 2005