If you love a good historical fiction, stories about horses, or are looking for a way to bring history to life, you will be quite excited to learn about a book series we recently discovered. Mattie Richardson’s Horses in History Series by Author Mattie Richardson/ Appaloosy Books is all of these things. We were excited to be picked to review this series, as I was looking for a way to teach my daughter about history in an unschooling sort of way. Here is what we found…
A Little Bit About Author Mattie Richardson
Mattie Richardson wrote her first book when she was just thirteen years old. Her passion is writing, and she loves to write about horses. The great thing about her books is that they not just fun to read, they are also educational. Richardson does a great job of weaving in some history with each of her stories.
A Little Bit About Mattie Richardson’s Horses in History Series
Mattie Richardson’s Horses in History Series is a great way to bring history to life. There are four books currently in the series. They include:
- Dusty’s Trail – Learn about the Pony Express
- Day and Night – Learn about the Civil War
- Golden Sunrise – Learn about the Alamo
- Appaloosy – Learn about the trouble between the US Goverment and the Nez Perce tribe.
In each book, the main character is a horse living and working in the time period of the novel. Through the telling of each story, the reader learns some of the important details and themes surrounding that time in history. Because the stories are told from the perspective of the horse, the reader gets an interesting take on the events being presented.
My personal favorite book is Dusty’s trail. This book shows just how much of a bond a horse and it’s rider can have. I really liked learning about quarter horses, and getting a glimps into the life of a Pony Express worker. It never occurred to me just how dangerous this job can truly be.
How We Used The Books
My plan for these books was to create unit studies to help teach my daughter history. While I still plan to use them this way, she is not quite ready just yet. These books are great for upper elementary and into middle school, and she is still working on early elementary skills.
These books will be great for unit studies when we do get there though. They each include a vocabulary section and a short history lesson to go along with the story. This will come in handy when we begin using these books as a learning tool.
I did let my eighth-grader read them, and he was able to read all four of them during this review period. They are a quick read, but he really enjoyed them, and thought having a horse be the main character was a nice touch.
My son’s favorite is Apaloosy. He really likes this one, because the horse Storm faces a mini challenge. What makes it really great is that the main is really stubborn, which makes things more interesting, because he creates his own challenges at times.
Seth (age 13)
“What I like about this book series is that it takes an approach I haven’t seen before. At first I thought I wouldn’t like the book series as it is about horses, which I am not interested in. However, as I read more, I thought they were quite interesting and one of those books that I could not put down.”
“These books are creative and imaginative. They really keep the reader engaged and it is such a fun way to learn a little more about history.”
Review Crew Thoughts…
You don’t have to take our word for it though. Other Review Crew families have also been working hard to bring you a great review. To check them out, simply click the link below.
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