Oct 3, 2008

Heartland: Apparently horses are people too... emotionally.

Heartland 7: Out of the Darkness
Lauren Brooke
Scholastic 2001

Alrighty, Mara informed me yesterday that Lauren Brooke isn't a real person. I was all "whaaat?" over it and then I really thought about it. That makes sense. Serious sense. It explains the vast differences between Heartland and Chestnut Hill for one thing.

It seems that Heartland is produced by three authors, who collaborated under the title of Working Partners (TM) which Heartland is copyrighted under. Lauren Brooke is a name they attached to their combined efforts. It probably looks better than having three names attached to a series like Heartland and the fans could then become attached to the author.

I have yet to find out or decide if a single author wrote a book, or if all three were involved in the writing of each. The one thing I always liked about Heartland was that it was consistent. There were very few errors in the series as a whole. Maybe now that I am aware of this, I might find little things that give me an answer.

Anyway, onto the book!

Basic Plot Points
  • Our horse in need of healing this time around is Gallant Prince, a thoroughbred who was involved in a barn fire. He was branded as a hero because he escaped and alerted his handler, Ryan, about the fire. But both Prince and Ryan got hurt. Ryan lost his job as he felt responsible for the accident. He also ended up blind in one eye. Prince ends up at Heartland all wild and distrustful and Amy can't seem to do anything with him. He is also scared of the dark.
  • Amy and Ty are all awkward around each other. Seems that kiss messed with Amy a bit and she doesn't want to lose Ty as a friend. Yeah, Amy. Ty is such a bundle of fun, we wouldn't want that at ALL. But this doesn't get resolved in this book. Maybe in book 8? The suspense is killer.
  • Daybreak and her dam Melody are ready for a new home, but Amy doesn't want them to go. She and Ty have a little spat over this one. Eventually, Amy gives in and realizes that she's just being selfish. Again. They find a new home for Daybreak and I rejoice because it means that I no longer have to read about how special that foal is.
  • Lou and Scott (McVet) are also fighting. Lou's new system paying for their creditors pissed Scott off.
  • There is no progress on the father issue in this book. Tim is still MIA.
  • Prince's secret to getting better is... did you guess it?.... his handler Ryan. Their super bond is all he needs to get better. And Ryan can stop being a recluse and go back to working with horses. Tear.
Points of Interest
  • Why must thoroughbreds be branded as wild and unmanageable. A few times in this book, people tell Amy she's crazy to be taking on a thoroughbred. Damn you, children's literature. Thanks to shit like this, I had to deal with kids freaking out over riding the old TB plodder at the stables I used to work at.
  • OMG, Lou got a computer for Heartland. No wonder this book is titled Out of the Darkness. Huzzah!
  • I am sorry to say this Bach Flower Remedy people, but there is no way your oils will work to calm down a freaked out horse.
  • I wonder if Ty finished school. Seriously.
  • How the hell does Amy fit in school, working with horses and visiting Ryan near Baltimore all in one day? Where is Baltimore, anyway? Is it far from Virginia? I don't know these things.
  • Sleeping in a barn will never solve a problem with a horse. They actually don't care if you are there or not. In fact, they would probably prefer it if you weren't there. You only end up smelly, dirty and with hay in your hair.
  • Interestingly, this is the only Heartland with a painted horse on the cover. The rest are photographs.
Ok, I am on a roll. And determined to see if I can actually work out if a single author wrote a single book or not!


Elizabeth said...

I can't believe there's no Lauren Brooke either! Damn, the list just keeps growing. I never read any of the Heartland books, though (or Chestnut Hill), so I can't really be disillusioned by this.

Anonymous said...

I thought this conversation was quite hilarious (the day after Amy sleeps in the barn with the horse):
Soraya: You don't look so good.
Amy: Well neither would you if you'd been up half the night with a deranged horse.