Friday 8 April 2016

Starlight Stables: Gymkhana Hijinks

Starlight Stables: Gymkhana Hijinks by Soraya Nichols (Puffin Books) PB RRP$12.99 ISBN 9780143308638

Reviewed by Dianne Bates

The fourth book in an Australian series, this is another book about the friendship and adventures of three horse-crazy girls, Poppy, Milly and Katie. The girls are more than happy to have returned to Starlight Stables to spend time with their new ponies. Preparing for their first big Pony Club competition, they spend their days riding, training and having fun.

Naturally a novel needs drama and this comes in the form of a rival competitor, Jessica who arrives at the stables to train with the trio. Immediately the girls don’t like the new girl, but they are forced to work with her. Certainly the title reflects what happens over the days ahead – plenty of hijinks – as the three friends battle what they believe is sabotage and try to save their chances at the forthcoming gymkhana.

At the back of the book, as well as a section about the author (who lives in New Zealand with a herd of horses), there is also a double-page spread about horses’ feeds and needs.

This is a book – and a series – which is sure to have much appeal especially to girls who are horse-mad and aged from 9 to 14 years.

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