‘A mix of Black Beauty and Jilly Cooper’: Leading showing judge and commentator releases first novel

  • A top showing judge and respected equestrian commentator has forayed into the world of storytelling, and is set to release her first book.

    Jo Jefferson, a former PE teacher, experienced horsewoman and former side-saddle rider of the year, has written the fictional A Horse’s Tale, which is due to be published at the end of October.

    Jo is a leading judge who has officiated at both the Royal International Horse Show (RIHS) and Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) on numerous occasions and also commentates on equestrian events up and down the country.

    “Its been in the pipeline for years,” said Jo. “Ive met such interesting people through my life with horses that I thought they deserved a book.”

    The novel is about Humphrey, a handsome, well-bred lightweight hunter owned by Major B and cared for by Jade, his groom. H, as he is affectionately known, with his bright face with a crooked white stripe, has a good life.

    But, after a reckless ride by the Major’s thoughtless nephew, H is sadly injured and has to be sold. And so begins a series of events and unwitting adventures across two countries with a variety of characters.

    Confronting happiness, theft, heroics, accidents and downright cruelty, will Humphrey’s resilience and patient temperament help him survive these trials and tribulations?

    Continued below…

    “I would say its a little like Black Beauty, which was one of my favourite books when I was younger,” explains Jo. “Some of the characters are like those from the Jilly Cooper novels, but less racy, as its aimed at all ages.

    “Humphrey has been inspired by several horses Ive met over the years and some of the things that happen to him are written from personal experience. This has been on the back burner for a while so Im very excited for its release.”

    The paperback of A Horse’s Tale is to be published by Olympia Publishers on 31 October.

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