The Black Stallion and Satan

Our rating: ***

Abu Ishak has died, leaving Alec the Black. At the same time, Alec and Henry have entered Satan in a big race in which the top horses from around the world are going to compete. Then they discover that Abu Ishak had entered the Black in the same race. Taking the chance that they can overcome the Black’s viciousness towards other horses, Alec and Henry decided to take both the Black and Satan to the racetrack. But one of the entries is diagnosed with an incurable and highly contagious disease. All of the horses entered in the race are placed in quarantine. Then dangerous forest fires start ravaging the area…

This book is a pretty good read. It gets rather exciting near the end, though that’s not to say that the rest is boring. Also (can you believe it?) Walter Farley actually tells whether or not the Black is faster than Satan. This is the fourth book in the Black Stallion series.

The Black Stallion

Our rating: ***

Alec Ramsey is returning from a visit with his Uncle Ralph when his ship stops at an Arabian port and a giant black stallion is put on board. Alec makes friends with the horse, whom he names “The Black.” Later, The Black saves Alec’s life (rather unwittingly) by pulling him to an island. After quite a long time, Alec and The Black are rescued and make it back to Flushing, Alec’s home. Alec finds lodging for his stallion at a neighbor’s barn. Henry Dailey, the owner of the barn, sees The Black’s potential as a race horse. And so Alec and Henry try to find a way to get The Black onto a racetrack with two of the greatest racing stars at the time…

An interesting book. The ending is rather predictable, but is still enjoyable. I find that The Black Stallion is one of the better books in the The Black Stallion series. I especially enjoy Tony, the Italian huckster.

The Black Stallion’s Filly

Our rating: ****

With Satan retired from racing, it looks as if Henry is out of a job. Or is he? Black Minx, the Black’s first daughter, is up for sale at auction and Henry buys her with the Kentucky Derby in mind. Though spoiled by her previous owners, Black Minx can be cured of her bad habits. But when she shows a lack of enthusiasm for racing, will she really be able to enter and win this classic race?

I haven’t read this book for a while, so it was fun to read it again. And, despite the fact that I’m not really a horse-lover, it kept me quite interested.

The Black Stallion’s Sulky Colt

Our rating: ****

Bonfire is back, and Tom is nervously preparing for the Hambletonion when disaster strikes. Only a few weeks before the great race, Tom is involved in a racing accident, leaving him un-hurt, but leaving Bonfire terrified of any horse trying to pass him on his right side. Alec Ramsey, who came to see Bonfire the day of the accident stays to help Tom. Unfortunately, yet another accident leaves Tom with a broken thigh bone. With the help of Henry Daily, Alec tries to cure Bonfire of his fear in time for the Hambeltonion.

This is the sequel to The Black Stallion’s Blood Bay Colt. Comparing the two, this book’s race at the end was even more heart-pounding. I kept finding myself only a few inches away from the pages!

The Black Stallion’s Ghost

Our rating: *

Alec and the Black are taking a vacation in Florida and meet, in the Everglades, Captain Philippe de Pluminel, who has trained a white mare to do Lipizanner tricks by music-cues, without a rider, and has traveled across the world with different circuses. Unknown to Alec, Captain Philippe has his eye on the Black for mating with his mare. Henry, (Alec’s friend and horse-trainer) who is in New York, doesn’t want Alec to have the Black mate. Alec is forced to stay at the captain’s residence because of fierce lightning and thunder, and that night the captain secretly tries to mate the Black with his mare.

This is a rather weird book. I didn’t mention it in the review, but the captain is superstitious and there’s a creature called Kovi that I’m not positive is “real” or not in this book. This book isn’t exactly all ages, because it probably wouldn’t be suitable for younger people. There is, however, one race in The Black Stallion’s Ghost, but it’s a small, short one that’s not very challenging — unlike in The Black Stallion’s Courage. This might be the worst Black Stallion book. I don’t really recommend it.