In this sixth book in the "Sandy Lane Stables" series, Charlie has made arrangements to spend the summer at Sandy Lane Stables. In return for staying with Nick and Sarah, the owners, while his divorced mother spends time with her new boyfriend, Charlie has agreed to help out around the stables. An unfortunate fall from a horse early in the summer has Charlie so guilt-ridden that he cannot resume his riding. As the story progresses, Charlie learns more about himself, the nature of honesty and courage, and the value of friendship. The book tells the story of Charlie's continuing efforts to ride again and, with flashbacks, lets the reader understand what has happened to Charlie, who does eventually get back on the horse. A Ride By Moonlight presents familiar dilemmas to young readers; with her techniques that intertwine hints of the details of Charlie's fall, the realistic problems that Charlie, Izzy and Tom encounter, and an almost disastrous storm, Michelle Bates creates a suspenseful, readable book that both boys and girls will enjoy. Because of its short chapters (an average of eight pages) and familiar language, this book is especially suited to younger readers who are beginning chapter books.
Children's Literature - Linda Uhlenkott