Summer with horses; Nicki & Wynne, by Barbara Morgenroth. New York: Atheneum. 139 pp. $9.95.
It looks like it's going to be a pretty grim summer for 12-year-old Nicki.
Her parents are moving from Ohio to Connecticut, and she'll have to leave her friends and the stable where she is learning to ride. To make matters worse, while her parents look for a new house, they're sending her to stay at a riding school in Connecticut. Nicki is afraid the other girls will be better riders, have won lots of ribbons, and even more -- won't like her at all.
Instead, Nicki finds a good friend in Wynne and becomes a much better rider. Along the way she learns not to be such a scaredy-cat.
This is a good story for intermediate readers, especially horse lovers. There is a lot about riding and plenty of gallops through the woods. Valuable lessons come out of the friendship between the two girls as we see overly cautious Nicki in contrast to reckless Wynne. As the summer passes both girls begin to grow up. Nicki becomes more adventurous and no longer sees disaster behind every bush. Wynne learns to take more care and to value her more sensible friend.