Scoop Coop's stable, Horsefeathers, will soon be assessed for property taxes and a meeting with the bank manager leaves Scoop worried that her payments may have to increase substantially. Along comes Benson Thayer, riding his runaway Appaloosa, Diablo. Scoop rescues him from riding into the path of a train, and he asks her to help him tame his horse. Ben is cute and he flatters her when he says she’s known as the teenage horse whisperer. Turns out, Ben’s mother has a local TV show, Della’s Folks, where she showcases local points of interest. Ben will remove his horse from the competing stable next door and leave Diablo at Horsefeathers to be re-trained.
What I Dislike: I didn’t like the way Aunt Dotty, Scoop’s guardian, was portrayed. She was the most influential adult character and a strong Christian who used prayer constantly, but she spoke with very poor grammar. Scoop wasn't a realistic teen to me. Her point of view and actions were far more adult-like than her peers and she had the responsibility of running a stable, even though she was in high school. Scoop believes Maggie is making poor choices when Maggie over-exaggerates her ability with horses. While I think it’s important for teens to realize there is a fine line between over-exaggerating and lying, it’s a common behavior and not something I would define as making bad choices. However, when Maggie helps Ben buy beer and cigarettes, she’s already been making poor choices in Scoop’s eyes, so there is no sharp contrast.
Overall Rating: Ho Hum
Age Appeal: Young Adult
Publisher Info: Concordia Publishing House; 2000; ISBN: 0570070090; Paperback $5.99.
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