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Wildwood Stables #3: Racing Against Time


Wildwood Stables #3: Racing Against Time

Teenage horseback rider Taylor Henry has her work cut out for her. After helping convince Mrs. Bernice LeFleur to re-open the once vibrant Wildwood Stables, Taylor agrees to work at Wildwood three days a week and let the ranch use rescued horses Prince Henry and Pixie for lessons and trail rides. In exchange, Mrs. LeFleur covers the cost for boarding, feeding and veterinary services for the rescued animals. Running the stables is an expensive venture. To keep the ranch open, Mrs. LeFleur relies on money from paying customers like Plum Mason.

Plum, an arrogant classmate of Taylor’s at Pheasant Valley Middle School, has a history of causing injury to horses. Shafir, a young, spirited and untrained Arabian mare belonging to Wildwood Stables, is the horse Plum chooses to ride. To protect Sharif, Taylor and teenage riders and horse trainers Mercedes and Daphne pretend to like Plum so she will listen to their instructions and advice. They do their best to make sure Plum doesn’t overtrain or mistreat Sharif. Headstrong Plum is determined to win at any cost and train Sharif her own way, regardless of the animal’s well being.

Black gelding Prince Albert is Taylor’s favorite horse, and she does not like sharing him with anyone. For Prince Albert to remain at Wildwood Stables, he has to earn his keep. And Taylor isn’t the only girl in love with Prince Albert. Dana, a seven-year-old who has been diagnosed as having autism, has grown attached to Prince Albert and wants to ride only him when she comes to Wildwood for therapeutic horse training.

On the same day Wildwood Stables hosts a rodeo to raise money, Dana is scheduled to perform in a riding event for children with special needs. Taylor is torn between competing in the rodeo and beating Plum, or helping Dana.

In RACING AGAINST TIME, book three in the Wildwood Stables series, award-winning author Suzanne Weyn uses her insider’s knowledge of the world of horseback riding and competitions to craft an entertaining story with a gentle lesson about responsibility, respect for animals and doing the right thing. Middle-grade readers, especially girls who love adventure stories about horses, should have fun reading this book.

Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt on May 1, 2010

Wildwood Stables #3: Racing Against Time
by Suzanne Weyn

  • Publication Date: May 1, 2010
  • Mass Market Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks
  • ISBN-10: 0545149819
  • ISBN-13: 9780545149815