Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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Oh, I remember this book …

At tor.com, Judith Tarr has a post about a book I read ages ago. I didn’t actually like it all that well, but I loved the cover:

Anybody remember that one? I remember the cover very well and the story not at all:

The Heavenly Horse from the Outermost West, by Mary Stanton.

Ever wondered where the fire horses of The White Road of the Moon came from? I bet it was from this cover (which I had forgotten about until I saw this post a minute ago.)

[White Road only has eight reviews at Amazon, I notice. That’s pathetic. If any of you liked it and haven’t reviewed it, a few lines would be appreciated.]

However, back to the main topic: I see that like me, Judith Tarr bounced off this book:

That was where I first began to realize why the book wasn’t working for me. The focus on stallions as the superior gender, and on mares as subject to their will and whim, made me go Nope. Nopenope…. I found myself pulling back from the human-essentialism of the worldbuilding. The horses are not horses, they’re humans in horse suits. They subscribe to human (modern Western) cultural assumptions, including the dominance of the male. Even physically, they keep showing human traits

Yep, that would have been my problem with this book. No question. I have always hated furry-humans-in-animal-suits.

Tarr says she’s going to do Dun Lady’s Jess next. Good. I completely agree that the horses in that one are much, much more realistic.

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