The No More Night
Mares: A Dream of Freedom
by Dawn Van Zant
In The No More Night Mares: A Dream of Freedom, the author of I Sea
Horses is back to spin more legendary horse stories. In this tale,
Eclipse, a fiery wild stallion, faces the challenge of protecting
his herd from the ultimate threat: man. In legendary fashion,
Eclipse is helped at his most desperate moment through the
intercession of "the magic of the moon and the stars in the sky."
It helps his herd to become "the night mares" and they can be
wild and free forever.
This book will be appreciated by young children with a strong
interest in horses. Preschoolers will probably have a hard time with
this book because there are not enough pictures per page to hold
their interest through the lengthy text. Several spreads have no
pictures at all other than a grey-blue background and multicolored
stars in the corners.
The horse illustrations by Kim McElroy are beautiful and very
realistic. However, as is the trademark of Wild Heart Ranch books,
the pictures are cropped into shapes that reflect the overall story,
in this case, stars. The cropping left me wanting to see the whole
picture so I could better place myself in the landscape of the
story. As is, the physical medium of the book is ever present and
doesn't allow the reader to become fully encapsulated in the story.
Therefore, I feel that the picture book aspect of the book is not
explored fully enough but the text would make a good early chapter
Overall, this is a nice imaginative horse story for children. The
back cover provides several websites that will help children get
more information about wild horses. The story itself weaves a fun
legend that children will remember for a lifetime.