I read almost every genre & I enjoy venturing into unfamiliar territory. As a library volunteer, I'm constantly bringing home novels. Being a substitute teacher, I read lots of YA & children's books.
I loved, loved, loved this book! I cannot say enough great things about this novel. I wish I could buy enough books and put them in every classroom and give a book talk about it because this book is a gem! What is so great about it? It is about a boy who loses his horse and then goes on a journey to get him back but it’s not really a journey, it’s an adventure, an outing, a movement, and a march. Joseph is determined to get Sarah back because that is all that is left of his family and as we trail along with Joseph we learn that his mama and his papa taught him right. He is a tough little man, with manners, skills, and values that his parent instilled in him but he knows right from wrong and don’t try to swindle him because he stern and sharp too.
Joseph set off on his mission alone but he comes across Ah-Kee, a Chinese boy who speaks no English and the town people where Joseph found him, have no time for him. Joseph invites Ah-Kee to join him while he tracks down his horse Sarah who was sold right out from underneath him. Armed with his father’s pistol and the money the swindler received for the sale, Joseph and Ah-Kee set off on foot. Joseph and Ah-Kee show us that sometimes you don’t have to speak the same language to communicate as these two boys are able to convey their thoughts to each other as they travel. It becomes an emotional and bonding experience for these two boys as they experience life together, drawing nearer to Joseph’s horse as they travel. I loved every page of this novel, I was laughing, crying and caring about the survival of these two boys. On their travels, they met other individuals who are having troubles, they met up with animals in the forest and they meet individuals who wanted to hear the story of how these two friends met up. I loved the western, twang of the language that the author uses and the adventures that the boys encounter, they were top-notch. This was a fabulous story, I highly recommend it.