Four of a Kind

Four of a Kind

by Patti Sherlock

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Left in Idaho for the summer with his crotchety grandfather, Andy looks forward to taking care of Maggie and Tom, the twin Percheron draft horses next door. Andy's divorced parents have no time for him, and the big horses offer some consolation. In the best National Velvet tradition, Andy sets his heart on owning the team and training the horses for the big pulling contest at the state fair. Facing each challenge with true grit, Andy discovers hidden strength and the renewed love of his family. Sherlock explores the theme of many favorite stories in which outward success goes hand-in-hand with inner growth, as in Mary O'Hara's My Friend Flicka and Jim Kjelgaard's dog stories. This first novel combines a love for an all-but-lost sport and way of life with straightforward storytelling that is sure to win over even the most cynical readers. Ages 8-12. (Oct.)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-- Like many children of divorce, 11-year-old Andy yearns to gain recognition. In this first-person narrative, he pursues an unusual goal--to drive a draft horse team in a pulling contest; with the two Percherons and his crusty grandfather, Andy forms a quartet to realize his dream. Each of the three distinct segments of the plot ends with a pivotal climax: Andy's learning to drive the Percherons, which concludes with a terrifying runaway; his job logging trees, which causes a tragic accident; and the contest itself, during which a wealthy competitor threatens the team. In the first two sections, Andy seems a faceless protagonist--he communicates sensations rather than heartfelt emotions. Grandpa (who speaks in a codgerly dialect, e.g., ``we got clothes ta warsh'') is a more interesting character. Andy and the story come alive during the contest, which contains the book's best action. This may be of limited appeal, but try it with those horse fanciers who enjoyed Peter Cohen's Calm Horse, Wild Night (Atheneum, 1982; o.p.). --Charlene Strickland, formerly at Albuquerque Pub. Lib. , NM

Product Details

Holiday House, Inc.
Publication date:
Edition description:
1st ed
Product dimensions:
5.83(w) x 8.58(h) x 0.93(d)
710L (what's this?)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

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