A Star Discovered (Lucky Foot Stable)

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9781402209987: A Star Discovered (Lucky Foot Stable)
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Part of the award-winning Lucky Foot Stable series, recipient of three "Book of the Year" National Awards!

Life at the Lucky Foot Stable has been going smoothly for epic friends Mary and Jody. Their ponies Lady and Gypsy are doing well and the girls are working hard to get Lady's foal, Star of Wonder, ready for his yearling classes and his very first horse show. All of this changes in an instant when a mysterious man shows up and says that he is going to take Star away. And the worst part is: he might have the right to do it!

What will happen to Mary and Jody without their new favorite foal? Can Willie save the day?

"Combines adventure with valuable lessons on life and friendship. Dawson has created believable characters with a love of horses."
--The Equiery

"Anyone who enjoys a great tale of horses and youth will find this a fascinating read. This most entertaining story moves swiftly while dealing with some very real issues."
--Ellie Mencer, Lockhouse to Lighthouse Magazine

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About the Author:

A horse lover since childhood, JoAnn S.Dawson lives with her husband Ted and their two sons on a horse farm in Maryland where they operate a bed & breakfast and offer riding lessons, carriage rides, horse shows and a summer camp. JoAnn teaches Equine Science at a local college and is an actress and animal wrangler for film and television. She has enjoyed competing
over the years on her American Paint Horse, Painted Warrior, but it is Butterscotch the pony who accompanies her on school visits and book signings. Butterscotch is so comfortable around kids that he may be the only pony in the country who is allowed to go into classrooms!

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Excerpt from Chapter 1: Intruders on the Farm

CHANGES WERE COMING to the McMurray dairy farm, and Willie was not the least bit happy about it. Mr. McMurray had decided to expand his herd of Holstein milking cows, and that expansion would require the addition of a new farm hand-not to take the place of Willie, of course, after thirty years of loyal service, but to help in the daily workload typical of a busy dairy. Mr. McMurray had broken the news to Willie the day before, explaining that it was for the best, and that now Willie could take some time off. But the old farm hand wanted none of it.

He had just finished the afternoon milking and was hobbling past the open doors of Lucky Foot Stable when Mary and Jody burst into the sunshine to garner his advice on their latest crisis.

"Willie! We're trying to get Star to square up like you showed us, but he won't do it! He won't even try!" Jody cried.
"He keeps stomping his foot and snorting at us!" Mary added.

Mary and Jody had been working for months to prepare the cantankerous colt for a yearling halter show in a nearby county, and Willie had been their guide. But this morning, he was in no mood for their problems.

"Daggonit, can you two ever pass a day without buggin' me about somethin'?" Willie growled, never slowing his pace. "I got problems of my own to worry about!"

Mary and Jody stood in stunned silence, staring at Willie's back as he continued up the gravel path toward the little tenant house where he lived on the farm. They knew Willie could be grumpy at times, even as cantankerous as the colt they were trying to train, but they had never heard such an edge in his voice.

Without a word the girls turned and walked back through the stable doors. Mary sat on a bale of hay and Jody picked up a broom and swept a few wayward pieces of straw from the dirt floor.

"I wonder what's wrong with Willie?" Mary finally asked.
"I don't know, but I guess we should leave him alone for a while," Jody answered quietly.
"But we can't leave him alone!" Mary cried, jumping up from her bale and pacing back and forth in agitation. "He's got to help us with Star! The show is only two months away!"
"Well, Willie's already shown us most of the things we need to work on," Jody continued, "so maybe we can do it ourselves."

Mary looked at Jody in disbelief. "Do it ourselves? Jody, the way Star is acting up, I'm beginning to wonder if we can do it even with Willie helping us!" Mary stopped pacing and looked out the door into the paddock. "I mean, come look at him right now!"

Jody threw down her broom and joined Mary at the Dutch door of the stable. She spotted Star in the far corner of the paddock by the loading ramp.

"Oh my gosh!" Jody exclaimed.
Finnegan, the cow herding dog, was at the top of the loading ramp. Mary and Jody, in their haste to run from the stable and appeal to Willie, had left Jody's crop in the paddock, and Star had quickly adopted it as his new toy. The handle of the crop was now in Star's mouth, and the other end was in Finnegan's. The girls watched in amazement as colt and dog played tug of war with the crop, Finnegan growling and Star shaking his head from side to side in an attempt to loosen Finnegan's grip. Finally the colt wrenched the crop from Finnegan's teeth, threw his head up, and took a victory gallop around the paddock, kicking and bucking and waving the crop for joy.

Mary and Jody looked at each other in dismay, and without a word they turned from the paddock to contemplate what to do next. Before they could even begin their brainstorming, Finnegan began barking furiously. The girls, figuring he was barking at Star's antics, didn't even look up until they heard the noise out on the gravel lane.

Peering out from the back door of Lucky Foot Stable, Mary and Jody were astonished at what they saw. A rickety old blue flatbed pickup truck with deep dents marking the passenger side door rattled past, backfiring as it went. The girls had seen trucks come and go before, but never one quite as curious as this. For on the bed of the truck, piled high and tied with baling twine and rough rope, was what seemed to be a complete collection of someone's earthly possessions. Beds, chairs, a refrigerator, a washing machine, blankets, pillows, lamps, and tables were all piled helter-skelter. And the crowning glory, a huge white rabbit in a cage, was strapped to the very top of the mound. As the truck rumbled by, the girls caught a glimpse of the passengers, who were all crammed into the cab like sardines, no telling just how many.

"What in the . . ." Mary's voice trailed off. The truck came to a stop by the old house trailer that sat next to Mr. McMurray's tractor shed, and Mary and Jody watched with mouths agape as the driver's side door creaked open and passengers began emerging.
Finnegan crouched on the ground next to the girls, sniffing the air and growling low in his throat.

"We've got to get Willie!" Jody whispered, grabbing Mary by the arm. "I think these people are trespassing or something! Come on, Finney!" The girls took off at a gallop toward Willie's tenant house with Finnegan close behind. They were just about to jump onto the porch when Willie appeared in the doorway.

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