Looking for a novel to read this holiday season? I just finished “Kick On,” by Kelly Jennings. An interesting combination of mystery, love story, and horse story, this book is written by a rider for riders…you may even pick up a dressage pointer or two! We’ve all read the “wanna-be” horse stories, with unrealistic plots and laborious explanations over mundane terms that any equestrian should know. Finally, here’s a book that entertains without frustrating the equine enthusiast…describing important details, like the floating feeling of an extended trot, or the power of a collected canter, instead of lamely teaching readers the difference between “bay” and “chestnut.”
The action is a little bit slow to begin– the horses don’t really appear until after 100 pages or so– but the backstory is well-crafted and relevant. The author has a very descriptive style, painting a thorough image of places and people, developing characters and laying foundation. Lead character Lauren Todd and her sister move to Panama to live with her father, while trying to escape her past. A former eventer, Lauren finds herself riding again, leading her to new challenges both on and off the horse– which she approaches with an eventer’s mentality that many of us will recognize. Her new life becomes wrapped in romance, danger, and adventure, building to a dramatic finish at the end.
While the plot is perhaps slightly predictable at times, it is nonetheless an original and interesting story which horsey readers will greatly enjoy. It is an adult book– sort of a grown-up version of The Saddle Club, in a good way. Add Kick On to your Christmas wish list; check it out at Amazon or at http://kickon.deedspublishing.com/.
Author Kelly Jennings has generously offered to send a signed copy to a lucky EN reader. Send an email with your name and address to Kelly at [email protected], winner will be chosen at random.