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Horse Books for Teens: Summer Reading for the Horse Crazy Kid

What did you read growing up? If you were lucky enough to be pony obsessed and a voracious reader, then you probably spent your summer either sitting in your favorite chair with a good book or at the barn. While your child’s school probably sent them home with a summer reading list filled with classics like The Call of the Wild or the infamously long Chesapeake, we’ve created our own summer reading list filled with horse books for teens. Summer reading doesn’t have to only prepare your child for the next school year– it can be a lot of fun, too. 

Elementary School Summer Reading List

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We’re recommending a classic horse book by Norman Thelwell to start your elementary schooler’s summer off right:  Penelope Rides Again by Norman Thelwell. This book is perfect for those kids who are always riding the naughty ponies at the barn. Following the adventures of Penelope and her pony Kipper, this book is sure to keep your child laughing as this plucky, pint-sized equestrian tackles everything from the showgrounds to the English countryside.

It’s a great choice for kids who are scared of falling off as Penelope struggles to stay in the saddle. This horse book takes a light-hearted perspective on life in the barn.  

summer reading, summer reading list

A second horse book to add to your child’s summer reading list is  The Plaid Horse Show Strides Book 1: School Horses & Show Ponies. This book follows the riders of Quince Oaks, namely working student Tally and her best friend Mac. While Tally rides the school’s lesson horses and Mac struggles to improve her riding on her pony hunter, the pair chase their dreams on horseback one stride at a time. Through this book your child will learn important lessons like resilience, perseverance and how to get back on the horse when things don’t work out quite as you’d hoped. 

Middle School Summer Reading List

horse books, horse books for teens

Instead of fictional stories, we’re bringing your middle schooler some practical horse books for teens to add to their summer reading list. First up, we have  How to Speak Horse by horse trainers Andrea and Markus Eschbach. Filled with bright and colorful illustrations, this book focuses on groundwork that is fun and safe for children. By the end of this book, your middle schooler will have a better handle on what their horse is trying to tell them through their body language and how they can “talk” back. 

horse books, horse books for teens

Next up on our summer reading list for middle schoolers, we have  The Kid's Guide to Horsemanship and Grooming by world-class grooms Cat Hill and Emma Ford. Whether they own, lease, or simply take lessons, this book will come in handy for middle schoolers who are learning to care for the horse in and out of the saddle. With a focus on teaching kids horsemanship via proper care for the horse before and after riding, this horse book will ensure the fair and proper care of the horse so that he remains healthy and happy. Filled with eye-catching and accurate illustrations, this book is perfect for the horse crazy kid who is passionate not just about riding, but about horsemanship. 

High School Summer Reading List

Equestrians who have reached high school most likely already know basic horsemanship standards and are far beyond the days of illustrated comics. Up their summer reading list with thought-provoking novels that dive deeper into the close relationship between horse and rider. 

summer reading, summer reading list, horse books, horse books for teens

First up, we have  The Girl on the Dancing Horse by world renowned dressage rider Charlotte Dujardin. Written by Charlotte herself, this book chronicles the amazing relationship between Charlotte and her charismatic horse Valegro. They become a household name among equestrians after bursting onto the stage at the 2012 London Olympic Games. Born into a middle class family, The Girl on the Dancing Horse is the story of how Charlotte and “Blueberry” overcame the odds to rise to the top of the sport. It’s the perfect summer read for a teen who loves dressage, but also for anyone who loves an underdog story. 

summer reading, summer reading list, horse books, horse books for teens

Last but not least, add the book  Why We Ride: Women Writers on the Horses in Their Lives to your high schooler’s summer reading list. Made up of a collection of stories from women of all disciplines, this anthology is an emotional read that will resonate with every equestrian of any age. Whether the writer of each story is a career equestrian or simply someone who rode horses as a child, horses have played a special role in the lives of each of these writers. Each story reveals how horses have made an impact in the lives of these women. With a foreword by bestselling novelist Jane Smiley, Why We Ride offers a reflective view on the relationships between women and horses.

Bring the Joy of Reading to Your Horse Crazy Kid This Summer

Your favorite online tack store may also become your new favorite bookstore. is proud to carry an exclusive collection of books from bestselling authors, like George Morris, Norman Thelwell, Uta Graf, and Jane Savoie. Whether you want to add to your summer reading list, or to your child’s, we have something for everyone on our online horse book store. 

Find your next read here.

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