by Anna Sewell
A Goodreads member requested some of the Black Beauty quotes be cleaned up. I owned this copy and it became easier to reread and try to fix as many quotes as I could while reading. (I should note that doing this is quite definitely a one-off & that I was intending to read this book next year anyway!)
This is the story of Black Beauty’s rise and then fall through the ranks through no fault of his own. BB’s voice is quite definitely Ms Sewell’s, a kindly woman who wanted to see horses (still the main form of transportation in the 1870s) treated (quite a bit) better. You really feel that BB has a few things he wants to get off his chest!
They always seemed to think that a horse was something like a steam-engine, only smaller. At any rate, they seemed to think that if they only pay for it, a horse is bound to go just as far, and just as fast, and with just as heavy a load as they please.
Sewell/BB do feel compassion for the poor working class cabbies who have no choice but to work horses they have rented seven days a week. Ginger’s tragic end still moved me to tears!
Anyone who is thinking of buying a horse (or any other domestic animal) should read this.
Sewell died a few months after this book was first published. I hope she did get at least to taste a small measure of the book’s success.