“Blue Ribbon Trail Ride” By Miralee Ferrell
Book four in Horses and Friends
Review source: Litfuse
My rating 3 out of 5 Stars
About the Book:
Thirteen-year old Kate and her friends came up with the perfect way to raise money for her autistic younger brother and others to attend summer camp—a horse scavenger hunt! As local businesses donate money and prizes, Kate keeps the entry fees in her mom’s antique jewelry box.
But when the box and the money disappear, Kate and her friends must unravel the clues, hold on to hope, and solve the mystery along the Blue Ribbon Trail Ride.
I read through this series with my younger sister, reading each one in order. While these books were entertaining, clean, and did keep my sister interested, there were some things that I am very concerned about which I will discuss below.
Each book had similar plot-lines, but I think that for their age group and for horse-loving readers, they are good. I’m afraid I am not an extreme horse-lover (or in that age group of 12-15), but for those who are, these are interesting reads. My favourite character would have to be Tori. She was very sweet, kind, and a great role-model.
The things I wish were different were that there could’ve been a stronger thread of faith and influence of godly character. The character of Kate was written well, I had just hoped the parents would’ve exhibited more in the way of leading their children in godly ways and turning things back to God and prayer, etc. I also was concerned with how often Kate did things she knew she wasn’t supposed to and going behind her parent’s backs or eavesdropping, etc. and then it was just skimmed over like it wasn’t that big of a deal. As it happened, we had to stop and discuss why Kate’s behaviour wasn’t okay, and what she should have done to honour God and her parents. My concern is that young girls will read this and not have an older sibling or parent to stop and discuss the right and wrongs of the book and will think that it’s normal and even okay to act as Kate did. I understand that they want to write a realistic character, but then there needs to be consequences for bad actions and corrections so that the readers will learn how to handle situations with a godly attitude.
This book was aimed more for public-schooled children of that age, I believe, which isn’t bad. My younger sister is the same age as the main character, but there were some vast differences and also we’re a homschooling family so there is that difference where we couldn’t relate fully to the main character.
I did appreciate that these books had a variety of people, like having an autistic character, a homeschooled character, a Hispanic character, a freckled character, and popular character, etc.
There were just quite a few issues that weren’t handled how I had hoped and things that were brought up and then ignored instead of being dealt with in a good way. And for those reasons I would strongly suggest that the book be read with an adult so that morals can be discussed and the reader can learn from Kate’s often selfish and disrespectful behaviour.
As I said, I would strongly advise this book not be read alone by younger readers.
I received complimentary copies of all four books from the publishers in exchange for my honest review which I have given.