Wild Blue: The Story of a Mustang Appaloosa (Breyer Horse Collection Series)

( 3 )

Overview

Born Free!

Among a patterned herd of wild Appaloosa mustangs running free in the Idaho wilderness lives Blue, a spirited filly the color of rain. Surrounded by her family, including her gentle sister Doe, and protected by her father, the band stallion, Blue lives a life both harsh and beautiful in the rugged terrain of an undiscovered habitat.

That all changes, though, when Blue and Doe are captured by rogue cowboys, setting in motion a chain ...

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Overview

Born Free!

Among a patterned herd of wild Appaloosa mustangs running free in the Idaho wilderness lives Blue, a spirited filly the color of rain. Surrounded by her family, including her gentle sister Doe, and protected by her father, the band stallion, Blue lives a life both harsh and beautiful in the rugged terrain of an undiscovered habitat.

That all changes, though, when Blue and Doe are captured by rogue cowboys, setting in motion a chain of events that threatens the very survival of their hidden, secret herd.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 3-5

A modern-day adventure that reads like an exuberant nature journal, this novel will grip readers from start to finish. Named because of her coat, which is "the color of rain, of water over rocks," Blue lives with her family in a remote and rugged swath of Idaho wilderness where humans seldom venture. In fact, the very existence of the herd is only a legend among locals. When two ne'er-do-well cowboys capture Blue and her gentle half sister Doe, the mustangs are taken far from their herd and the freedom they've always known. Missing their family and not knowing anything about human ways (not even recognizing a rope), they encounter a range of human behavior after their first terrible experience. Blue ultimately escapes captivity and connects with a Nez Perce boy and his family, whose ancestors bred Appaloosas. Deftly and tenderly, without being overly sentimental, Wedekind describes the subtleties of horse instinct and communication. Horse fans and animal lovers will embrace this book with unbridled enthusiasm. It deserves a place next to Marguerite Henry or even Jack London on young readers' bookshelves.-Madeline J. Bryant, Los Angeles Public Library

From the Publisher
Praise for Wild Blue:

“A modern-day adventure that reads like an exuberant nature journal, this novel will grip readers from start to finish. Named because of her coat, which is “the color of rain, of water over rocks,” Blue lives with her family in a remote and rugged swath of Idaho wilderness where humans seldom venture. In fact, the very existence of the herd is only a legend among locals. When two ne’er-do-well cowboys capture Blue and her gentle half sister Doe, the mustangs are taken far from their herd and the freedom they’ve always known. Missing their family and not knowing anything about human ways (not even recognizing a rope), they encounter a range of human behavior after their first terrible experience. Blue ultimately escapes captivity and connects with a Nez Perce boy and his family, whose ancestors bred Appaloosas. Deftly and tenderly, without being overly sentimental, Wedekind describes the subtleties of horse instinct and communication. Horse fans and animal lovers will embrace this book with unbridled enthusiasm. It deserves a place next to Marguerite Henry or even Jack London on young readers’ bookshelves.”—School Library Journal

“The book’s beginning, with its vivid, convincing portrayal of the mustangs’way of life, is particularly strong… horse lovers will find plenty to enjoy.”—Booklist

Praise for Annie Wedekind’s A Horse of Her Own:

“Sensitive, sophisticated and lyrically written, Wedekind’s debut portrays the typical teen struggle for self-awareness in an anything-but-typical fashion. Possibly the most honest horse book since National Velvet, from an equestrian point-of-view, this offering’s riding scenes combine accuracy with seat-of-the-pants excitement. A champion.”—Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312599171
  • Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
  • Publication date: 6/9/2009
  • Series: Breyer Horse Collection Series , #1
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 229,663
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.52 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.36 (d)

Meet the Author

Annie Wedekind grew up riding horses in Louisville, Kentucky. Since then, she’s been in the saddle in every place she’s lived, from Rhode Island to New Orleans, South Africa to New York. Her first novel, A Horse of Her Own, was praised by Kirkus as “possibly the most honest horse book since National Velvet . . . A champion.” She is also the author of The Breyer Horse Collection books, including Little Prince, Samirah’s Ride, and Mercury’s Flight. She lives with her family in Brooklyn, New York.

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Read an Excerpt

Blue could just make out the froth of white foam where the water met rock, but this bend appeared calm. Still, she could not gauge how deep or how fast the river ran, nor what was beyond the curve downstream, at least not from her perch on the banks. It would be safer to wait until sunup to attempt the crossing, Blue knew, but she was unnerved by this forbidding land.

The water that flowed around her fetlocks as she took her first tentative step into the Snake was bracingly cold. The mustang had never swum this distance before, Blue steeled herself and plunged forward toward the heart of the river.

By the time the water was to her shoulder, Blue’s hooves were dragged out from under her and she was sucked downstream so forcefully it was as if she had been struck by the eye of a hurricane. She spun 360 degrees, now swept, hindquarters first, by the sickeningly strong current. Struggling to keep her muzzle above the roiling water, the Appaloosa desperately tried to get her legs coordinated beneath her to swim, to struggle, to do anything to stop this mad catapult in the current’s grip.

It was no use; no matter how hard she pumped her legs, she was powerless against the river’s strength. She was turned helplessly around and around, and as she spun, her body collided with rocks and bracken lodged in the riverbed. Nothing seemed able to stop her painful plunge, but still Blue fought desperately. She fought for her life.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 26, 2013

    Very realistically told. The author clearly knows something abou

    Very realistically told. The author clearly knows something about horse behavior and language. It is also a good and well told story.

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  • Posted October 19, 2011

    I Love This Book!

    Wild Blue is one of my favorite books! I'm a horse-lover, so this book was even more enjoyable. I finished it the first day I got it. I couldn't put it down! I think that one day it'll be a classic. Horse-lovers check this out! And Anne Wedekind, who wrote the book, has written some more books in the Breyer Horse Collection! They are on my Christmas list!
    Anne Wedekind is a great author! Again, Check This Book Out!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for TeensReadToo.com

    WILD BLUE is one of the books in a new series called the Breyer Horse Collection. According to a letter that opens the book, this fiction series is designed to help readers learn about and appreciate different breeds of horses along with their history and characteristics. This collection is sure to be a success with middle grade readers who love horses or are just looking for an enjoyable wildlife adventure.

    Blue is a wild mustang appaloosa. At two years old she has only known life in the wilds of Idaho. Living with her small band of wild horses, she is used to wide-open spaces and the freedom to roam without the interference of mankind.

    One afternoon a pony is caught in a snare trap, and Blue and her sister, Doe, watch helplessly. A sudden thunderstorm and torrential rain complicate the situation, making escape impossible. Two cowboys show up, but instead of rescuing the struggling horse, they use ropes to capture Blue and her sister. The fear-stricken horses are loaded into a trailer and taken from the only home they've ever known.

    What follows is a terrifying ordeal seen through the eyes of Blue the wild mustang. She experiences men for the first time, as well as captivity, the modern mechanical world, and things she never knew existed. No matter how frightening her world becomes, she stays focused on one thing only - escape. More than anything she wants to return to Idaho and life with her herd.

    Annie Wedekind captures the essence of the wild mustang. In the beginning, she creates a vivid picture of the free life of the wild horse. Then her stirring descriptions take readers into the terrifying world of captivity, including all its sights and sounds and trembling fear. She shows both the good and the bad when it comes to people and their treatment of animals. Blue's story will touch the heart of even the most jaded reader.

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