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Bubba Goes National by Jennifer Walker

Published by Twin Trinity Media

Pages: 246

Ages: Young Adult

Publishers Summary: Thirteen-year-old Leslie Clark has loved horses for as long as she can remember and has been riding since she was six. Although her widowed father cannot afford to give her everything she desires, she works hard to get what she wants. When what she wants, a great horse to show, is taken right out from under her by her rival, Kate Wellesley, Leslie thinks her whole world has been turned upside down–until she finds Lucky (nicknamed Bubba by her father, who thinks he is funny). Then, everything changes.
Readers of Bubba Goes National will be touched by an inspiring story, but they will also learn about the care and showing of horses while they read about Leslie’s adventures. Sandwiched in is a lesson that if one is willing to work hard, they can make their dreams come true. Bubba Goes National is the first of the Riders of Green Meadow series, which will showcase horses that are unwanted by one person but are another’s dream come true.

For all of us, at some point in time, there becomes something that we are truly passionate about. Be it singing, crafting, a profession, parenthood; whatever it may be it can lead us to extremes and drive us to be the very best version of ourselves possible. For Leslie, even as a thirteen year old girl, her life’s passion is horses. Anything and everything about horses, from the daily up-keep to the occasional competitions, she enjoys every second of it and strives for her best in every aspect. Unfortunately for Leslie, after her mother’s untimely death, her and her father struggle to make ends meet and a horse of her own seems a very distant possibility. That is, until she happens upon Lucky at a local auction house.

Leslie’s story was delightful. With the exception of some of the more difficult parts in Black Beauty, Bubba Goes National actually reminded me of my time reading that favorite from my youth. The love and admiration Leslie shows toward the horses in the story, not just Lucky, was wonderful. And her work ethic was impeccable. From beginning to end Leslie strives to do the very best she could in school, with her horses, her friends and her family. It was definitely a story I would share with young readers and especially those with an affinity for horses.

There were a few things in the story I found a bit difficult to swallow. Leslie seemed a bit too perfect. Yes, it’s a book intended for younger readers, but especially in today’s culture I think it’s rare to come across a girl who wouldn’t at least have a few snarky comments for her “adversary”. I admired Leslie’s work ethic and ideals and hope that my own children will adopt many, if not all of these attributes, but I wonder how well the story will relate to kids today. I was also hoping for a little more development in the story behind Kat (Leslie’s opposition) and her family, because I needed a little more tension to keep things going throughout the story. All of this being said, it was still a fun read.

Bubba Goes National is a wonderful story about a girl struggling to overcome the tragedies of her past so that she can take hold of the passions of her future. Young girls will love Leslie and parents will enjoy the wholesome characteristics in the story. Though this wasn’t necessarily for me, I can definitely see quite a few readers truly enjoy Leslie’s journey. If you happen to know a young girl in search of a great new book involving horses or animals in general you’ll definitely want to pick up Bubba Goes National.

The1stdaughter Recommends: Ages 10 and up. Young girls and horse lovers everywhere will fall in love with Leslie’s story.

For the Comments: If you could choose one topic as a central theme (like horses for instance) of a book, what would it be?

This book was provided for review by the author, Jennifer Walker, in conjunction with Pump Up Your Book! Virtual Book Tours. Thank you!
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6 Responses to Book Review: Bubba Goes National by Jennifer Walker

  1. NotNessie says:

    I would have loved this when I was 10-12. I was completely obsessed with horses.

  2. Gina says:

    Never really fell in love with horses when I was little (though I wouldn’t mind having one now)…I did have a great love for unicorns though. ^_^ What can I say, I fancied on the side of imagination.

    • I think that’s where I landed more often than not myself. I was a huge fan of the movie Legend when I was young just because of the unicorn aspect. Although, I did have quite a few friends who loved horses and like you, I wouldn’t mind the opportunity to be around them now as an adult.

  3. Thanks for the great review!

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