Books by Sandra Alonzo

Released: March 2, 2010

When Yancy's older brother threatens Yancy's horse Shy, running away seems the only answer. For all of Yancy's 15 years, he confides to his journal, he's felt threatened by Will, his Conduct Disorder-diagnosed brother. To protect Shy, Yancy flees into the California wilderness with the horse. After an educational bout of hard labor assisting the Mexican ranch hand Tavo (who returns to Veracruz and vanishes from Yancy's consciousness once he's served his narrative purpose), Yancy is returned home. With his brother increasingly violent and his parents impotent, it's only a matter of time until someone is seriously hurt. All's well that ends well—at least for Yancy, who gets a girlfriend, a safe home for his horse and his parents to himself. Too bad for Will, who gets committed to a facility where he's drugged to the gills. Huang's cartoons add spice and verisimilitude to Yancy's journal, despite the distractions of a handwriting-style typeface. The tale's many weaknesses are made up for by Yancy's engaging writing style, alternating adolescent poems, narrative and comics. (Fiction. 13-15)Read full book review >
GALLOP-O-GALLOP by Sandra Alonzo
Released: April 1, 2007

"Gallop-o-gallop-o-gallop along / singing-o-singing-o-singing a song / swift over hills, carry me there / the wind on my face / the sky in my hair." Singsong rhymes and heartfelt sentiments ooze from this collection of 21 horse poems that offer few surprises in content or form. Written for a younger audience than Jessie Haas's Hoofprints (2004), they also lack Hoofprints's bite and originality. Lines such as, "I do know something changed in me / that wondrous night our foal was born," barely deserve to be called poetry at all. On the other hand, the language won't actually harm anyone, the acrylic illustrations are pretty and horse-crazy children will read just about anything about horses. An adequate addition to library collections that don't have Lee Bennett Hopkins's My Mane Catches the Wind (1979) or other better volumes. (Picture book/poetry. 5-9)Read full book review >