This is perhaps the book that fans of American horse behaviour expert Monty Roberts have been longing him to write – common horse problems solved in a question-and-answer format. In fact, the small, hardback book covers 150 such problems, both on the ground and when ridden, from loading to bitting.
Although there are line drawings, there is no photography as in previous Monty Roberts volumes. However, the advice is given in a chatty style and is easy to take in, meaning that the lack of colour doesn’t seem an issue.
The fact that the advice is broken into bite-sized pieces, tailored to answer each question, makes it easier to absorb the salient points, rather than pages of unbroken, running text. That said, however, if you had a specific problem with your horse and wanted to find a similar question answered in the book, you would be hard-pushed to locate it quickly, as the chapters are not always clearly named – ‘Fruit salad’ would be one example!
I would imagine, though, that most people who read this book will be interested in the wider picture and will want to read it from cover to cover. It’s certainly food for thought and I found myself immersed virtually straight away.
I did think the tendency for the questions to begin ‘Mr Roberts’ slightly strange – almost as though it was setting Monty apart from his audience – but this was something I soon adjusted to and stopped noticing once I’d started reading in depth.
Fan or not of Monty’s work, it has inspired ‘light bulb moments’ in many horsemen and women – and on reading the book, you can see why.
Well-written, insightful and more importantly, encouraging us to think, it is certainly a good addition to any equestrian library.
Published by Headline, ISBN: 9780755317226