The Man Who Listens to Horses Paperback – Jan 26 1999
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Monty Roberts is, as they say, the real horse whisperer--even if he does revile the last third of Nicholas Evans's romance. Yet Roberts also makes clear from the start that listening and close attention have more to do with gentling an animal than soi-disant whispering. As far as he's concerned, silent communication can "effectively cross over the boundary between human (the ultimate fight animal) and horse (the flight animal). Using their language, their system of communication, I could create a strong bond of trust. I would achieve cross-species communication." And achieve it he does. After one short session, he has even the wildest stallion nickering with ungulate abandon.
Roberts's descriptions of "joining up," as he calls it with horses--as well as with the deer who cavort on his California farm like so many hyperintelligent Bambis--are inspirational in the best sense of the word. Surprisingly, though, it took him long years to persuade most of the humans in his life that pain and punishment are not the way to go. Indeed, the author expends many a page on past mistakes and disasters, familial and professional. Yet The Man Who Listens to Horses remains a powerfully positive document--and not just for Mr. Ed. Best of all, when it comes to his life's work, Roberts is far more practical than mystical. Instead of portraying himself as Equus's messiah, he'd rather share his hard-won knowledge. Having overcome years of rejection and ridicule, the author is certainly not short in the self-esteem department, as some passages in this book demonstrate. No matter. He always checks his ego before entering the corral. --Kerry Fried --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From School Library Journal
YAABy the time he was seven years old, Roberts knew that he wanted to work with horses for a living. An experienced rider, competing in horse shows since age four, he began to understand how horses communicate by observing wild mustangs on the Nevada range. How he progressed from child rodeo star to horse trainer for Queen Elizabeth II is an inspiring story of quiet persistence in dealing with an abusive father, losing his first horse, and facing rejection and ridicule because of his unique, nonviolent training methods. Told in a matter-of-fact way, this narrative looks into the horse business from rodeo to racetrack as experienced by a "real-life horse whisperer." The appendix offers a guide to the join-up method of training that Roberts developed. Young adults will enjoy the story and gain insights into dealing with adults and following their dreams.ABetsy E. Pfeffer, Northern Virginia Community College
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Reviewed by Ashley Sutton
For hundreds of years, people have trusted the traditional way of training horses. This method uses beatings, pain, and suffering to break the horse's spirit and force him to obey. This practice was considered normal, but the consequences of "breaking" a horse this way are tragic. Horses lose their trust toward humans, and while many people are aware of this loss, it seemed that this was the only effective way to train horses. But one day, Monty Roberts went out into the wilderness of Nevada to watch the wild mustangs that roamed there. It was observing the herd's strict disciplinary procedures that brought Monty to noticing a pattern in the horses' behavior, a kind of "language." He called this language "Equus," and his knowledge of Equus helped him discover join-up, efficient, painless way to train horses. In The Man Who Listens to Horses, Monty Roberts tells of his childhood, his discovery of Equus and join-up, and of the many obstacles that stood in his way of sharing his methods with others. Now sixty-six years old, Monty "is squarely built, and at 240 pounds on a five-foot-four-inch frame, he is much heavier than he looks," says Lawrence Scanlon, who wrote the introduction to the book. His vision is impaired; he can only see black, white, and a wide array of gray tones. Monty grew up around horses, since his father was a well-known horse trainer. Throughout his childhood, Monty witnessed the cruel methods of breaking horses that his father used. His disagreements with his father were a main factor in what made his so determined to stop these methods. Monty's father was a firm believer in sacking-out, in other words, tying a horse up and beating him into submission.Read more ›
THe one thing Monty definitely did NOT make up is his so called method - reading 'horse language' and communicating with horses has been done for 1000s of years! It's not an old versus new thing. His claim that "everybody was horribly cruel until I came along" is an insult to many kind and humane people who work with horses and have done so in the past. That is hard to forgive.
Most recent customer reviews
Monty worked out a great procedure to persuade a horse to accept a rider. He kindly made it available to others so that the original cruel 'taming' need not take place. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Patricia Morrison
This book seamlessly integrates emotional, philosophical and technical development of a remarkable human being, teaching us all about making a better life for us all as fellow... Read morePublished 21 months ago by William L. Day
It's amazing how body language reveals far more than we realize! I've come to believe that men are two-legged horses :)Published 23 months ago by Amira Abdellatif
I gave "The Man Who Listens To Horses" to my friend for his birthday. He really loved it. The book gives such a thorough and insightful account of training, handling, and... Read morePublished on Oct. 2 2013 by Deerpath
So much relevance not just to horses but to life!
Haven't finished yet but enjoyed it alot so far!
Monty Robert is an amazing man and this book is for all the horse lovers who are truly looking to have a special and trusting relationship with their horse. Read morePublished on Aug. 27 2013 by Val
Quite possibly the best book I've ever read. Very moving true story. I also have a great love for horse and understand where he is coming from. Read morePublished on May 10 2013 by connoisseur
This book is for anyone who cares for or has ever cared about horses, or animals in general. It strenghtens the believe that trust in this world gets you further than anything... Read morePublished on May 2 2010 by L. Pepin