The Language of Hoofbeats by Catherine Ryan Hyde
Paperback, 342 pages
Published December 9th, 2014 by Union Lake Publishing
Note: As a tour host selected by TLC virtual book tours, I received a complimentary copy from the publishers in exchange for an honest review. The opinions expressed here are completely honest and completely my own.
From the best selling author of Pay it Forward comes a heartwarming and poignant tale of family. Paula and Jackie have moved their family to a small town. The two women and their three children are new in town and are seeking to make a new start. They are loving and well-meaning people and hope to settle in quickly. However, their neighbour has other ideas.
Clementine D’Antonio is a bitter old woman with traditional ideals. This new far from traditional family that moved in across the street has set her on edge. Not only so but their troublesome foster daughter Star has took a liking to Clementine’s horse and doesn’t see an issue with visiting him without permission. Clementine hides her tragic past behind layers of hate. She doesn’t much like the horse, Comet, and can’t care for him properly, but she’ll be damned if that girl makes a bond with him.
Star loved Comet from the moment she saw him. He is full of angst and needs attention. He’s been locked up in his corral for far too long and she can’t stand to see him treated that way. He may have all the food, water, and shelter he needs, but that’s not all it takes to properly love an animal. Star feels that she and Comet where meant to meet. How far will she go to do what she perceives as the right thing for the horse?
I got into this book right away, intrigued by the characters and their circumstances. I am also an animal lover, and animals are central to this story. The story changes back and forth between the perspective of Jackie and Clementine. I found that this was especially interesting and important for character development. Each woman is set in her ways and her beliefs, and throughout the story they learn to let go of their different prejudices. Having these two women as protagonists, two women with two vastly different viewpoints on the same events, makes for a very interesting read.
This is a story of love, family, forgiveness, and acceptance. Each character has something that they need to learn. I loved this book and all the people in it. They were all so interesting and engaging. Clementine was my favourite. She was ans prickly as a porcupine on the outside, but there was another side to her that no one knew—that she didn’t even let herself know. She was afraid of feeling the pain that was etched deep inside her, and to avoid it she covered herself with hard layers that she didn’t let anyone close enough to penetrate. Throughout the story she develops so much. It was a great ride to be along with her as she begins to let others in. That’s what I found so great about this book—the ways in which all the characters grow and develop. It was really well done!
I really, really liked this book. I definitely recommend it to those who love fiction!
About the Author
Catherine Ryan Hyde is the bestselling author of twenty-four novels, including the 1999 smash hitPay It Forward,which has been translated into more than two dozen languages, and was made into a major motion picture starring Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt, and Haley Joel Osment. In addition to her novels, Hyde is the author of more than fifty short stories and is founder and former president (2000–2009) of the Pay It Forward Foundation. During her years as a professional public speaker, she addressed the National Conference on Education, met with AmeriCorps members at the White House, and shared a dais with President Bill Clinton.
Connect with Catherine
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Beth is the founder and editor of Fuelled by Fiction. She is a twenty-something east coast Canadian girl who loves writing about books and feminism.