Photo credit: http://www.alisonhartbooks.com/
WHIRLWIND is the sequel to Alison Hart's SHADOW HORSE (originally released in 1999, recently re-released).
Ms. Hart was kind enough to send me both books, though they can each stand on their own. I read each book in an afternoon, and loved them both. Since they are both young adult novels, they're a fairly quick read.
WHIRLWIND picks up where SHADOW HORSE left off, with Jas Schuler living with her foster mom on at an animal rescue, awaiting her grandfather's release from rehab following his stroke. Having rescued Shadow from certain death at an auction, Jas found out that he was actually Aladdin, a horse who had supposedly died five years ago. Armed with that knowledge, Jas sets out to prove that Whirlwind is still alive.
From the first page, I was drawn into this book and the world that Ms. Hart created. I couldn't put the book down until the last page. She creates a world where a scared thirteen year-old can band together with the good people in her life and fight the "bad guys". The images flow from the page and I was with Jas and her friends throughout the entire thing, experiencing the heartache, uncertainty, fear and ultimate victory right alongside them.
I enjoyed both books so much that I wish I was a tween again, because her books would find a spot on my shelf right next to my Walter Farley books. As an adult, I've had a great time spending a couple of afternoons in Ms. Hart's world. I can't wait to pass the books on to my niece Autobot, and will anxiously await her take on them.