- File Size: 1079 KB
- Print Length: 93 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1979405816
- Publisher: Open Road Media Teen & Tween (March 18, 2014)
- Publication Date: March 18, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00INITQ4M
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #724,224 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Black Beauty Kindle Edition
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- Length: 93 pages
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
- Page Flip: Enabled
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- Age Level: 9 - 12
- Grade Level: 4 - 6
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Black Beauty tells the story of the horse's own long and varied life, from a well-born colt in a pleasant meadow to an elegant carriage horse for a gentleman to a painfully overworked cab horse. Throughout, Sewell rails--in a gentle, 19th-century way--against animal maltreatment. Young readers will follow Black Beauty's fortunes, good and bad, with gentle masters as well as cruel. Children can easily make the leap from horse-human relationships to human-human relationships, and begin to understand how their own consideration of others may be a benefit to all. (Ages 9 to 12)" --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
From the Author
Anna Sewell wrote Black Beauty, her only novel, in order to convince a wide audience of the importance of the humane treatment of animals. Ruth Brown is the author of such books A Dark, Dark Tale and Ten Seeds.
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One interesting aspect of the story is it's narrated by Black Beauty himself, so we get to see the world from the horse's point of view...and we don't come off well in many aspects.
The story is fun on its own terms, but it also teaches consideration for all life, compassion for animals, and how important love and respect are in this world. Any child who hears this story and takes it to heart will become a better adult.
"You are a very good man," said James. "I wish I may ever be like you."
"I don't often speak of myself," said John, "but as you are going away from us out into the world to shift for yourself I'll just tell you how I look on these things. I was just as old as Joseph when my father and mother died of the fever within ten days of each other, and left me and my cripple sister Nelly alone in the world, without a relation that we could look to for help. I was a farmer's boy, not earning enough to keep myself, much less both of us, and she must have gone to the workhouse but for our mistress (Nelly calls her her angel, and she has good right to do so). She went and hired a room for her with old Widow Mallet, and she gave her knitting and needlework when she was able to do it; and when she was ill she sent her dinners and many nice, comfortable things, and was like a mother to her. Then the master he took me into the stable under old Norman, the coachman that was then. I had my food at the house and my bed in the loft, and a suit of clothes, and three shillings a week, so that I could help Nelly. Then there was Norman; he might have turned round and said at his age he could not be troubled with a raw boy from the plow-tail, but he was like a father to me, and took no end of pains with me. When the old man died some years after I stepped into his place, and now of course I have top wages, and can lay by for a rainy day or a sunny day, as it may happen, and Nelly is as happy as a bird. So you see, James, I am not the man that should turn up his nose at a little boy and vex a good, kind master. No, no! I shall miss you very much, James, but we shall pull through, and there's nothing like doing a kindness when 'tis put in your way, and I am glad I can do it."
"Then," said James, "you don't hold with that saying, `Everybody look after himself, and take care of number one'?"
"No, indeed," said John, "where should I and Nelly have been if master and mistress and old Norman had only taken care of number one? Why, she in the workhouse and I hoeing turnips! Where would Black Beauty and Ginger have been if you had only thought of number one? why, roasted to death! No, Jim, no! that is a selfish, heathenish saying, whoever uses it; and any man who thinks he has nothing to do but take care of number one, why, it's a pity but what he had been drowned like a puppy or a kitten, before he got his eyes open; that's what I think," said John, with a very decided jerk of his head.
Told from the horse's point-of-view, Black Beauty describes his birth, early training and his fondness for his first master, Squire Gordon, stablemates Ginger and Merrylegs and grooms John and James.
For fashion's sake, some owners insisted the grooms harness the carriage horses with their head's held high with the check rein. This made it difficult for the team to pull as well as caused other long term problems. Squire Gordon was against such devices.
When James plans on moving on, little Joe Green is trained for his position. The young boy makes a grave error in Beauty's care after the horse is ridden hard to fetch the doctor for the mistress, and the doc rides him hard back. Beauty survives the incident, but when the mistress needs to move due to her illness, all the horses must be sold.
After that, Beauty describes his life with various owners. Some are ignorant, some cruel but a handful give him the best care they can including a cab driver. Life is hard, and the author gives details of the cruelty of some grooms, drivers and owners.
At least Sewell gives the story a happy ending.
I first read this as a teen, before I took riding lessons. Looking back, I think Sewell's insight helped me decide my path on my journey to becoming a professional horsewoman.
I would recommend this book for all horse lovers except the very young.
Top international reviews
What i find so sad is that so many of the issues raised in this book are things that are still issues today, animal cruelty, bad use of animals for fashion, overworking etc. It's sad that in the many years since this was written, things may have changed, but not improved.
definitely worth a read for adults, as it really hammers home some heartbreaking points, but is still a beautiful story.
For people like me who're wondering, the adult version has a description of Ginger's death which children may find upsetting. This version skips that.
Not a bad book to read. A bit heavy on the class divide, but kids who love horses will probably enjoy it.
I must concur. Mind you, it is not a conventionally dramatic novel--it's a gentle quiet read. But those who can gear down to its quiet tone and pace will find that it is written with great insight. The author (a19th century woman) knew horses intimately, how they think and feel, how they act and react, how they view us humans.
This edition is valuable for another reason--the introduction is written by the great California horse trainer Monty Roberts. It turns out his mother read the book to him when he was a child, and this was a great inspiration for him.
Do a bit of research ... how many horse and pony sancturies are in your country? Visit them (online or in person) and check out the state in which some of their residents arrive at that place of care and safety. It'll touch your heart.
The book itself is beautifully written, though perhaps not for the under 10's - for in places it'll bring tears to the eyes. It's interesting though - and A.S. has captured a horse's "take" on life with humans well. Indeed Black Beauty and his friends often show quite a touch of that "horse sense" we humans talk about! We are of course glad for Beauty that his own story has a happy ending, with him living out his old age in love and safekeeping. But for many horses, ponies, donkeys, it's not so - this is 2009, and that is a disgraceful fact.
As with all Collector's Library books, this is a compact size and a lovely presentation of the story, with occasional good quality line drawings. Well worth a place on your bookshelf - for all all ages to read, and learn from.
"we used to gallop all together spherical and spherical the field", how does that even happen, this happened several times in the first few pages and now I'm annoyed and looking for the book elsewhere. I would suggest you do the same
Shame on Amazon for selling this but at least they refunded straight away.
What can I say about Black Beauty all time classic I have in hardback, paperback too
Love it from when I was a child the only book that brings tears to my eyes and I cannot watch the film version.The story starts off with Beauty being born and he as to be sold on and ends up in a varous hands some cruel some nice and also for his friend Ginger who being highly strung ends up in the wrong hands many times. This book is seen through the eyes of Black Beauty he even goes to war become a carrige horse.
If you havent read this book it is thoughly enjoyable whatever age
The same reviews appear to be added to different versions of this book so it's pot luck what you get.