Riding Freedom Scholastic Press, 1998, 138pp., $4.99 Pam Munoz Ryan ISBN # 0439087961
What happens to a girl do when she is living in a place where there are only boys? She gets teased.
"In the mid-eighteen hundreds, when the East was young and the West was yet to be settled, a baby was born, named Charlotte. When she was nothing more than a bundle, she surprised her parents and puzzled the doctor by surviving several fevers. Folks said that any other baby would have died, but Charlotte was already strong. She walked before most babies crawled. She talked before most babies babbled, and she never cried. Unless someone took something away from her."
Riding Freedom is a fictional biography about a girl, Charlotte Parkhurst, who was an orphan. She was taken to a boys orphanage because there were no girls orphanages back then. She had to do many chores because she was the only girl there, apart from the cook. She always got back at the boys for teasing her though because every Saturday there would be a horse race at the orphanage and no matter what, Charlotte won the race. Charlotte loved horses. Her favorite horse at the orphanage was called Freedom. Charlotte liked her life at the orphanage until something bad happened to Freedom. The story goes on to describe Charlotte's life at the orphanage and then as she grows up.
The book is full of exciting and unexpected events that keeps the reader wanting to keep on reading. You admire Charlotte for never giving up even when things get tough. Anyone who likes adventure stories and likes horses will enjoy reading this book.