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Robert Sidney Bowen/James Robert Richard

Robert Sidney Bowen (1900 - 1977) also wrote under the name James Robert Richard. He had an incident-packed life; he left school when aged only 14 to drive an ambulance for the French Army in World War One. He survived this experience, and enlisted with the British to fly, having lied about his age, as he surely must have done to get into the French Army. After the war, he worked for the Daily Mail in London, and went on to become editor of Aviation magazine.


He started writing fiction for various pulp magazines, and with the outbreak of World War II, was commissioned to write an aviation series. The Dave Dawson series was the result, followed by another war series, Red Randall. He had a phenomenal work rate, being capable of completing a novel in ten days. After the war, he continued writing, producing boys’ stories featuring sport and adventure. He used the pseudonym James Robert Richard for horse stories (and some on American football).


Finding the books: all the books are reasonably easy to find.


Links and sources

Terri Wear: Horse Stories - An Annotated Bibliography

Thanks to Lisa Catz for the summary of Joker

Wikipedia on Robert Sidney Bowen


Bibliography - horse books only

The Purple Palomino

Lothrop, Lee and Shepherd, New York, 1955, 189 pp



While taking wildlife photographs, Billy hears an argument and a gunshot, and sees a man take
off riding a purple horse with a white tail, but afterwards no one can find the dead man or the
purple horse.


The Appaloosa Curse

Lothrop, Lee and Shepherd, New York, 1956, 189 pp



The big city boy Frankie wins a summer vacation at an Appaloosa horse ranch in Idaho, but he
arrives to find that the Todds are worried about offers to buy their ranch and about the unexplained
murder of one of their ranch hands.


Snow King, the Lipizzan Horse

Lothrop, Lee and Shepherd, New York, 1957, 187 pp



After the end of the Korean War, two Lipizzaner horses, Snow King and Snow Queen, are to be
delivered to Frank Baker’s ranch, but Baker doesn’t know that the horses’ handler has sworn to
get revenge on Baker, and starts by stealing Snow King.


Joker the Polo Pony

Lothrop, Lee and Shepard, New York, 1959, 175 pp


Fourteen-year-old Dave Banks is invited to spend his vacation on the Craven ranch in Texas. Already
an experienced rider, the people of the ranch are still surprised at his skill at handling the polo ponies
that are raised and trained at the ranch. Dave quickly learns the sport of polo, and has a special
connection with Joker, one of the ranch’s best polo ponies. After a bad stable fire, Joker is frightened
of everything, and Dave works with her, trying to bring her back to her old glory.


Double M for Morgans

Lothrop, Lee and Shepherd, New York, 1958, 154 pp


Canyon Fury

Lothrop, Lee and Shepard, New York, 1952, 159 pp

Cassell & Co, London, 1954, 192 pp



Johnny goes to visit his school friend Jeff at his uncle’s Arabian horse ranch, but when he gets
there, many of the colts have been stolen. When Jeff goes to look for them, he disappears too.

Phantom Mustang

Lothrop, Lee and Shepherd, New York,1954, 192 pp


As Robert Sidney Bowen