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Shy Boy: The Horse That Came in from the Wild Paperback – Bargain Price, October 24, 2000

4.5 out of 5 stars 79 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Celebrated as "the real horse whisperer," Monty Roberts made his literary debut with The Man Who Listens to Horses--half autobiography, half introductory lesson to "Equus," or the language of horses. In Shy Boy, Roberts returns with the story of a wild mustang he captured and domesticated using his renowned, nonviolent training technique. Beginning with the stunning Cuyama Valley in California, where he tracked the young stallion Shy Boy for three days, and moving on to the horse's gradual acclimation to human contact, Roberts walks the reader through the slow, detailed process. In the course of this equine odyssey, he stitches in inspiring anecdotes, as in the case of Samantha, an ailing 12-year-old who used Monty's method: "She saved a horse from an untimely end in a slaughterhouse and spared herself further harm--and she had done it without ever raising a hand or even her voice." However, the real credit for this book should probably go to the photographer, Christopher Dydyk, whose 100 or so colorful glossies dominate the book's 236 pages, with dazzling shots of the ranch, the range, and Monty at work. With brilliant graphics and easy-to-read language, Shy Boy is ideal for a young horse lover. --Rebekah Warren --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Not just for animal lovers, this delightful and deeply moving page-turner, a sequel to Roberts's bestselling The Man Who Listens to Horses, picks up the story of this California horse trainer's relationship with Shy Boy, a wild mustang whom he "gentled." By mimicking an equine body language that he believes is genetically ingrained in the memory of all horses, Roberts, as detailed in his earlier book, quickly and painlessly transformed Shy Boy from a free-roaming steed of the Nevada foothills into a trusting, cooperative and worthy mount. Roberts's nonviolent approach to acclimating horses to saddle, bridle and rider was highlighted in 1997 and 1998 in a PBS-aired BBC documentary, which led countless viewers to inquire: If given the chance to be free again, would Shy Boy take it and run? Here is the answer to that question: Roberts describes taking Shy Boy back to his original free-range herd. The mustang's choiceAafter an overnight rompAmakes for an unforgettable climax that will leave no dry eyes. Shy Boy, a mix of vigor, strength, innocence, ego and impish high spirits, will win readers' hearts, while Roberts's humane alternative to the harsh treatment of horses holds inspirational lessons about the abuse we inflict on animalsAand on our fellow humans. Dydyk's breathtaking color photographs capture the rugged majestic terrain while exploring, without sentimentality, the spirit of nobility and freedom that the horse represents in America's collective psyche. Plainspoken yet powerful, this remarkable story is one of those very rare books that can restore one's faith in humanity. Agent, Jane Turnbull.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Paperbacks; 1 Reprint edition (October 24, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060932899
  • ASIN: B0057DBBN0
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,476,069 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Sharon E. Cathcart VINE VOICE on May 9, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In this book, noted California "horse whisperer" Monty Roberts chronicles how he uses his "Join Up" method of horse gentling on a mustang in the wild. Roberts relates how he began studying communication among horses as a young boy and eventually used that information to begin working with the animals. Roberts, along with photographer Christopher Dydyk, creates a beautiful chronicle of how the horse he calls Shy Boy comes to trust people and become a valuable part of ranch life. The climax of the story is when Roberts releases Shy Boy to the free-range herd where the horse had been living, to see how well the "Join Up" method has worked ... and Shy Boy comes home. This is a beautiful book for anyone who loves horses and believes that gentleness and understanding are the key to relating to both animals and humans.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I recommend that you read Monty Roberts "The Man Who Listens to Horses" whether you read it before or after "Shy Boy..." Having read Monty's earlier book first the story of Shy Boy meant so much more to me. To read that, at the age of 62 with a bad back and not-so-young anymore, Monty relived one of the best times of his life gentling a wild Mustang as he did as a kid, but for a BBC Documentary as well. The gentling and training went better than he expected and he created a friendly and willing partner out of a wild horse. Not only that, the BBC special and the book continues to change the lives of many people and horses around the world as Monty's way of working with horses becomes known and accepted. The book itself contains spectacular photography of Monty, Shy Boy, other horses, and the beautiful country filmed in the BBC special. It is a heartwarming and inspiring story to say the least.
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A Kid's Review on February 4, 2002
Format: Paperback
Shy Boy is a book about a horse that was brought in from the wild by means of join-up, a way of communicating with wild horses using there own body language. The author explains about how to communicate with horses using their own language which he calls equis. I highly recommend this book if you would like to learn more about horses in their own "home field", or if you like a good story. It made me sorry to finish it. Truly I believe anyone who has even the slightest interest in horses should strongly consider this book. It is an inspirational book for horsemen and women of all ages. The pages are full of beautiful pictures of the mustangs in their own home. Please read this book next time you get a chance. It is definitely worth reading.
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Format: Hardcover
This is one of the best books I've read in a long time. It's even better than Mr. Roberts's first book. I was incredibly moved by the story of Shy Boy, and I was inspired by Monty Roberts's overall message. What a great book!
I couldn't wait to bring this book home and read it. I read it in one sitting and cried at the ending and then I thought about it all day. Monty Roberts is amazing--the story of Shy Boy is unforgettable. Read it! You won't be sorry!
Animal lovers everywhere--not just horse lovers--will fall in love with this book. I didn't want it to end. What Monty Roberts can teach us is priceless. I loved this book.
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Format: Paperback
This is one of the best books I have ever read. Its a must read for every horse crazy person out there. Its filled with great stories about Monty's life while growing up, how he came to working with wild horses, and how he met Shy Boy. There are stories about others who have tried his methods, and how they worked for them. This book is one that you will help you to gain your horses trust, and to help you bond with them. Every horse crazy person will fall in love with this book.
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Format: Hardcover
As a teenager, author Monty Roberts once managed to gentle a mustang, using methods developed from close observation of equine interaction in the wild, a sharp contrast to the harsh practice of "breaking" a horse used by most ranchers of the time. Ultimately he was able to ride the horse back to his father's ranch. He had hoped this feat would win him some respect from his father, but instead no one could believe it. They ridiculed him, saying he must have chosen a horse that had already been handled by humans. Disheartened, Roberts pursued the matter no further, but did go on to use his experience with the mustang as the model for Join Up, his method of gently getting a horse to the point where he trusts his human handlers and allows himself to be ridden.

Roberts never really expected to duplicate that childhood experience, but got a lucky chance to do just that when the BBC contacted him in 1996, interested in doing a program about his training methods. It took some convincing to get them to agree to the idea of actually working with a wild mustang, but in the end they were won over, and the story that follows is what makes up this book. Periodically the Bureau of Land Management rounds up a number of mustangs and adopts them out to qualified individuals, as a means to keep the wild horse populations at a sustainable level. At one of these adoption events, Roberts acquired a small mustang gelding whom he named Shy Boy. In order to ensure that the horse did not become accustomed to humans, and especially to himself, he stayed away from the horse during his short period of human contact, and made arrangements to have him turned out with a wild band of horses roaming on a large private area of rangeland.
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