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Everything but the Horse: 12/08/13
Everything but the Horse by Holly Hobbie is a picture book memoir about when she and her parents moved to a farm. Although she had never ridden a horse, she was quickly taken with them, and spent her free time drawing the neighbors' horses (as well as other animals). Her hope of hopes is to own a horse of her own, but her parents have a different idea. Although it wasn't the gift she wanted, she fell in love with it and named it "Beauty", the name she had selected for her dream horse.
The book features Hobbie's lovely water colors. The book reads well both from a children's perspective (the adventure of moving, the excitement over a gift, the farm animals) and from a parent's point of view (the compromise over the wanted gift and the practical gift, and the nostalgia).
I have mentioned before my fond memories of Holly Hobbie — the fictional character — and my delight at rediscovering the author/illustrator through her recently published children's books. It really is difficult for me to separate fictional Holly from author / illustrator Holly. As a child, I spent hours and hours drawing Holly Hobbie and her friends, either by copying them from my books or coloring books, or drawing them from memory.