Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Wind Dancer by Chris Platt (Review & Giveaway)

ISBN:  9781561457366
About the book:  Ali McCormick used to love horses. But then she and her beloved pony Max were in an accident; Ali was injured, Max died, and Ali's brother Danny, who caused the accident, joined the military. Now Danny has returned from Afghanistan, injured and traumatized. He's learning to walk with the prosthetic that has replaced one of his legs, but he can't seem to find a way to reconnect with family and friends. Withdrawn and quick to anger, Danny suffers from terrible nightmares and frightening mood changes.

When Ali and her friend Cara realize that an elderly neighbor has been neglecting her horses, they decide they have to act. Little does Ali realize that she'll end up having to help care for these two horses, who are starved and suffering from malnutrition. Can Ali rise above her painful memories and love a horse again? And can Wind Dancer, also injured and traumatized, help Danny find meaning in his life again?

My thoughts: Children seem to be fascinated with horses and middle schoolers love to have the opportunity to ride horses. In Wind Dancer, the heroin, Ali, has an accident involving her horse and the horse has to be put down. Thereafter, Ali doesn’t care be with horses.

However, an opportunity arises where she works with terribly abused horses.  Ali's compassionate nature comes to the forefront as she begins to aid in the rescue and care of these abused horses. Ali also has an opportunity to work with horses to help soldiers returning from war suffering from PSTD. A program involving horses is used to help them through this.

This is a short book just right for middle readers about a subject (horses) they will enjoy. Readers will also gain knowledge of post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD) and care and recovery of abused or traumatized animals. They will learn, too, how Ali learns to cope with her own feelings.

The reading is not so deep as to discourage young readers but engaging enough to capture their attention.  

GIVEAWAY:  Peachtree Publishers has graciously provided a giveaway copy for one of Chat With Vera's readers to vie for. Just use the Rafflecopter form below and soon one reader will have their very own copy. Begins April 29 & ENDS May 20 @ 12:01 a.m EDT. Open for USA mailing addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: A complimentary copy was provided by Peachtree Publishers in exchange for my honest review. Opinions expressed are solely my own. I received no compensation for this review.


  1. http://peachtree-online.com/index.php/book/place-for-butterflies.html

  2. Selection of Awards and Nominatons:

    Highly Commended - Macmillan Prize for Children's Picture Book Illustration 2005
    2nd Prize -Macmillan Prize for Children's Picture Book Illustration 2006
    Shortlisted, Best Emerging Illustrator - The Book Trust 2008
    Longlisted - The Greenaway Medal, 2009
    Nominated - Blue Spruce Award (Canada)
    Winner, Picture Book Category - Coventry Inspiration Book Awards
    Winner - Dundee Children's Book Award 2011
    Winner - Stockport Children's Book Award 2011
    Shortlisted- Sheffield Children's Book Award 2011
    Longlisted - The Greenaway Medal, 20013 (Two Books)
    Shortlisted: AOI Illustration Awards 2013 (Children's Book category)

  3. Claude at the Circus would be one I would like to read to my child. She loved Claude at the Beach. Fun book!

  4. He's the author of the Claude books that I just mentioned. Didn't realized who the author was for those books. :)

  5. I love the concept of Wind Dancer It covers subjects that middle age children should be encouraged to read about.
    I learned that Alex T. Smith wanted to be an illustrator since age 5.
    I would like to read the book "ABOUT HABITATS: FORESTS"
    I liked Peachtree on F B

  6. Rosa's room looks really fun for my favorite granddaughter! Sonja dot Nishimoto at gmail dot com

  7. Alex is the author of the Claude series and has won lots of awards. Sonja dot Nishimoto at gmail dot com

  8. A place for Butterflies. We have a butterflies unit right now. The kids would love this book!

  9. Alex born in 1985 went to school to be an illustrator and won many awards he is the author of the Claude series.

  10. I think it would be fun to read - Astra, by Chris Platt, ISBN: 978-1-56145-541-6
    my granddaughter loves horses..

  11. I would like to have the About Habitats: Mountains for my daughter.

  12. Sorry to say this but I think that the link is wrong and the author's name is misspelled?

    http://chrisplattbooks.com/ She has a degree in Journalism from the University of Nevada Reno. and has 5 horses of her own.

    1. Emi - Thank you so much for catching that error. Terrible what an "r" instead of an "l" can do. I believe I've fixed the error and the links associated with it. Apologies to the author for misspelling her name.

  13. I think that my daughters would like Bark Park from Peachtree Publishers because they are into dogs right now and this is about a park where dogs can do what they want.

  14. Bark Park looks like a really cute book! I would like that for my friend's daughter.


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