NO SMALL THING by Natale Ghent


Age Range: 10 - 14
Email this review


How much tragedy equals a pony? Four years ago, Nathaniel had a pony, a nice house and a Dad—but now his Dad is gone and his mother struggles to keep the family fed. When he sees an ad in the paper for a free pony, he and his two sisters set their hearts on it, but getting it brings more challenges. Subplots involving an abused horse, a rich girl, the missing dad and the strange behavior of one of Nathaniel’s sisters all promise more than they deliver, and some of the details about the pony, Smokey, and the barn where he’s kept ring false. (Among them: he’s a stallion at the outset, and his owners hand him over to the three children without ever speaking to an adult.) Nathaniel is a nuanced character but doesn’t grow within the story; the ending falls from the sky. Gorgeous writing, subtle characterizations and a few very good scenes make this book initially seem better than it is. (Fiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-7636-2422-5
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: Candlewick
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2005