For heart-pounding, page-turning excitement with emotional surprises, upsets and photo finishes, put your money on a racetrack novel that brilliantly captures the world of thoroughbred horses and the people who love them, SILVER DREAMS by Sondra Rice Newman. Right out of the gate, Newman draws you into the dazzling big-city life of successful career woman Leigh Meredith. But just when you think you are comfortably in the saddle for one of those power-sex-and-money sagas, the heroine becomes a far more complex and...
For heart-pounding, page-turning excitement with emotional surprises, upsets and photo finishes, put your money on a racetrack novel that brilliantly captures the world of thoroughbred horses and the people who love them, SILVER DREAMS by Sondra Rice Newman. Right out of the gate, Newman draws you into the dazzling big-city life of successful career woman Leigh Meredith. But just when you think you are comfortably in the saddle for one of those power-sex-and-money sagas, the heroine becomes a far more complex and fascinating character when she tosses aside the unsatisfying trappings of glamour for life in the rolling hillsides of the Virginia horse country.
Quite by accident, or perhaps divine design, Leigh takes pity on an abandoned one-eyed gelding named Silver Dreams, and together they gallop into the world of horse racing. As her relationship with Silver Dreams unfolds, it becomes a rich exploration of the multiple meanings of the love between the woman and the gray horse; the love shared amongst her circle of friends who embrace the vision of Silver Dreams on the track; the love of simple ideals about decency and loyalty (in stark contrast to the big city business ethics); and the passionate love Leigh finds with the man who is her soul mate.
As a smart young woman in search of personal fulfillment, Leigh opens herself to problems and dangers that sometimes require all of her force of personality and moral fortitude. As she is tested on this journey of self-discovery, she finds resources in herself and in her friends that prepare her for the life transformation of her dreams.
One of the many magic tricks in this riveting novel is that even if you never cared a whit about horses or thoroughbred racing, little by little you are seduced by Silver Dreams, until the fascinating details of training, horse grooming, and jockey techniques become engaging turning points in a fast-paced story. Newman knows how to gather the energy of a good story and build from scene to scene in a way that gathers both excitement and understanding. From the moment Leigh's curiosity takes her out to Bibs McBride's Boarding Farm to see a "skinny, ole sick horse" to the tense high point as Silver Dreams enters the starting gate for the Breeder's Cup at Churchill Downs, Silver Dreams is a smooth-gaited, breathtakingly swift ride that becomes more electrifying at each turn.
More important, this is a satisfying novel that grapples with some of the key issues of our business-fixated, money-driven contemporary world. A horse with a big heart proves to be the way that Leigh comes to grips with her own heart and opens up her life to moral and romantic successes that would never have been possible in the expensive penthouses of New York City. The heroine comes away from this saga a winner in many ways, and so does the reader.
Newman's story is a roller coaster ride, exposing the reader to the highs and lows of horse ownership... Newman's experience as a horsewoman was put to use here, as she realistically portrayed the atmosphere of the racing world... a very believable novel and an enjoyable read as well...
This romantic tale shows that not all successful New Yorkers have hearts of stone. Not to mention that success means nothing if you are not truly happy. Sondra Rice Newman knows this well and puts the knowledge to good use in this novel of friends, horses, and love. If you know nothing about horses or all the hard work and dedication required in caring for them, whether race horses or not, then you get a glimpse at how hard the job is. Wonderful story that you will recall for quite a while.
Ms. Newman hit the winner's circle with Silver Dreams! Without any hesitation or doubt, this is one of the finest contemporary romance novels this reader has read this year! It is inspirational, heartwarming, but most of all, it speaks to the spirit of courage—the big gray gelding that could. Silver Dreams is filled with award-winning writing. If you are an aspiring equestrian, an all-round horse lover, or just looking for a wonderfully written story, then this is the novel for you.
...excellent novel. Accurate, detailed knowledge about horses is reflected in every page. This is mixed with terrific character development, a tight plot, and a very satisfying love story.
I really liked this book. The author clearly knows her way around horses and this is nicely reflected in this novel. Horse lovers (and even those of you who don’t love horses!) should not miss this offering. It’s not often that a work of fiction about horses is so readable and so accurate.
Katherine L. Hunt
Newman has written a beautiful novel complete with fully developed characters who engage your heart... The storyline is believable without being typical. The plotline allows the story to unfold at its own pace. The human traits give the heroine and hero a vulnerability that quickly endears them to anyone reading this book. The minor characters add a sense of community with their own side stories. The full spectrum of emotions are evoked within these pages. I absolutely loved this book.
In love with horses from childhood, Sondra Rice Newman learned to ride at a county fairgrounds track on her pony. When her father bought a few thoroughbreds, she tagged along for everything from morning workouts to the auctions at Keeneland. While in high school, she often arrived for class covered by a cloud of stable dust.
After moving to Arizona, “I knew I had to get horses back in m life,” she said. “I began riding again.” Then, one day at the Graham County Fair races in Safford, she eyed a dappled gray horse. “That horse became ‘Silver Dreams” in my mind,” she recalls. “We drove home to Tucson and I sat at the computer wondering what might have happened if a young woman like Leigh Meredith had discovered him first.”