A Fun, Timely, Sensitive, and Perceptive Story

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By Valerie Ormond

J.B. Max Publishing, 2014

ISBN 978-0-9736330-4-7

Fiction, 246 pages

Soft Cover, Kindle

Reviewed by Margaret Evans

“Sadie felt so isolated. She couldn’t share or communicate her worry with her family. And living in a community with no other military people, no one else would understand. So she lived a life of constant secret fear which grew every day. She needed a distraction.”

Gold medal award winning author Valerie Ormond’s Believing in Horses, Too takes thirteen-year-old Sadie Navarro to new challenges. Sadie wants more than ever to make her father proud by riding in her first show on her gelding, Lucky. Her father, Lieutenant Commander Navarro, is deployed to Afghanistan. She always fears for his safety and during the first six months of his deployment, Sadie had preoccupied herself by taking on the challenge of saving ten horses on their way to an auction and a very uncertain future.

With the horses now in safe homes, Sadie needs a new challenge and riding in her very first show on Lucky is the answer. But she isn’t prepared for all the steps it takes to get ready for a show and Lucky is as green as she is. It doesn’t help that a particularly nasty rival in the show ring sets out to dash Sadie’s dreams and puts Lucky’s safety at risk.

But Sadie is also challenged and excited when she goes to visit one of the horses she had saved. Goliath is now part of an equine-assisted therapy program and Sadie is fascinated by how horses help people with special needs, especially military veterans. She knows this is something very special she wants to do. But does she have the courage – or the skills – to do it?

Believing in Horses, Too is a fun, timely, sensitive and perceptive story of Sadie’s struggles, inner fears, hopes and triumphs.

Author Valerie Ormond brings great insight into Sadie’s story. Ormond had a career in the US Navy before starting out as a writer. She is a lifetime member of the Naval Intelligence Professionals and Disabled American Veterans, and she is a strong supporter of military and veteran families.

Her first novel, Believing in Horses won the Military Writers Society of America Gold Medal for Young Adult Books and the Gold Medal for Children’s Literature in the Stars and Flags Book Awards. Ormond owns and rides horses and lives in Maryland with husband Jaime Navarro.

Believing in Horses, Too is a great read for both young riders and parents who want to understand the many special talents that horses offer.

This article was originally published in the May/June 2016 issue of Canadian Horse Journal.

Thank you, Margaret Evans, Canadian Horse Journal, and Horse Journals for this nice review and introducing new readers to this book!

“Believing In Horses, Too” Awarded Grant

MHIBThank you to the Maryland Horse Industry Board (MHIB) for selecting “Believing In Horses, Too,” for a 2016 grant award! The funds will be used to purchase and donate a copy of “Believing In Horses, Too,” for every Maryland county public library system and Baltimore city. “Believing In Horses, Too,” tells the story of a young girl who worries about her Navy father serving in Afghanistan. She turns to her love of horses to distract her from her problems. Her adventures with horse rescue, show competition, and equine-assisted therapies present her challenges, and she learns about overcoming adversity through friendships and personal growth. [Read more…]

Author Pays It Forward for Other Authors

I hope you will stop by and check out my guest author interview on Cheryl Holloway’s Blog – she asks great questions! Besides offering writing tips based on her career as a writer, Cheryl hosts authors from around the world to help them gain exposure. In her words: “On this blog, I ‘Pay it Forward’ to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too ‘Pay It Forward’ to any other author.”


Cheryl Holloway's Blog [Read more…]

Fun With Freedom U.S.A. Tour


Billy meets Freedom at Loftmar Stables, Bowie, Md.

Sometimes we just have to have fun. Last week, all the way from Vancouver, Canada, Freedom the “Spokes-character” for Voice For The Horse Foundation Children’s International Writing Competition made his first U.S. stop in Bowie, Md. I’ve been fortunate to work as a volunteer helping coordinate the Voice For The Horse annual writing competition for the past three years and serving as a judge.

I had the honor of being the first to host Freedom Flat Stanley to help promote the horse-themed children’s writing competition. We began the tour at Loftmar Stables ,where our Maryland horses welcomed him. [Read more…]

Riding Invisible – Book Review

Riding Invisible
It’s been awhile since a book review, and since I found this particular book so interesting, I wanted to share “Riding Invisible” by Sandra Alonzo with you.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved “Riding Invisible” and had a hard time putting it down. The story begins with young Yancy running away from home on his horse, Shy, and the journal of his adventure. [Read more…]

Making A Difference, One Horse, Or Human, at a Time

Hello readers, I was a finalist in Angelea Walkup’s HorseGirlTV Guest Bloggers competition!  Please see the guest post at http://www.horsegirltv.com/making-a-difference-one-horse-or-human-at-a-time/.  Thanks, Angelea, and Team HorseGirlTV for inviting me to stop by.