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Faith and Ponies

A listing of horse and pony books where the characters’ faith is central to the plot.

 

 

Faith and Ponies

There are surprisingly large numbers of evangelistic pony books, with the pony presumably meant to sugar the pill. In pony books of the 1930s to 1960s, characters often go to church – Jill goes on Christmas Day in Jill’s Gymkhana, and Augusta in Diana Pullein-Thompson’s I Wanted a Pony gets into dire trouble after selling the buttons from her best-coat-for-church. Their faith, if they have one, is seen as more of a social event: you go to church because that is what people do. There are moral dilemmas in the books, but the ponies are the focus, not religious faith. Several Christian publishing houses took a more robust view, and produced books in which, more or less overtly, Christianity is combined with ponies.

Patricia Baldwin: Ricky at the Riding School – a career novel, in which Ricky is convinced everyone is against her
Doreen Bairstow: Rosettes for Helen – Jo and Claire dream of a pony of their own
Elizabeth Batt: A Pony to Stay – Lal tries to help her friend keep her pony
Elisabeth Batt: The Wilde Riders – do the wealthy heroes of this story really have everything?
Deborah Bennett: Susan’s Conquest – Susan has to go and stay with an aunt when her mother is ill
Deborah Bennett: Jean’s Black Diamond and Son of Diamond – Jean meets and masters a beautiful black mare
Beryl Bye: Nobody’s Pony, Pony for Sale, Belle’s Bridle – Cathy and her friends learn about ponies
JoAnn Chitwood Collier: A Horse Called… series
Sally Fielding: Kate and the Mystery Ponies and Kate and the Horrible Horse – Kate has adventures on her grey mare Shasta
Sue Garnett: The Ponies of Swallowdale Farm –Cassie is heartbroken when her family have to move to the Lake District
Ambrose Haynes: Helpful Penny, Inquisitive Penny
Jeanne Hovde: A Horse Named Cinnamon/A Horse for Cassie  Cassie is desperate for a riding horse
Marsha Hubler: Keystone Stables series – foster child Skye finds peace through horses and her foster parents
Isobel Knight: Surefooted  Doris loves her pony, even though he isn’t smart
David Lewis: The Horse in the Hills – Andy’s secret leads him into danger in the Welsh hills
Dandi Daley Mackall: Winnie the Horse Gentler series – Winnie has an ability with horses
Elsie Milligan: Golden Girl – a girl dreams of owning a horse
Diana Pullein-Thompson: The Boy Who Came to Stay – a boy learns to ride
Fiona Satow: A Horse Called Krow
Rose-Mary Silvester: Cousins at the Manor School – two South African girls find life in an English school restrictive
Jane Smiley: Abby series – Abby adjusts to life with devout parents
Marion P Stroud: Rainbow’s End – Penny wants to learn to ride
Marion P Stroud: If Wishes Were Horses – two girls wish for things it doesn’t look as if either of them will get
Constance White: Ponies at Westways – Susan finds out that people are not necessarily what they seem
Gail Vinall: Roughshod Ride – Two girls get a holiday job with rides thrown in