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Read the Pacific & Prairie Horse Journal review for Heart of a Hoofbeat.

Earthways Publications

(click here to view a sample)
Read the Pacific & Prairie Horse Journal review for Heart of a Hoofbeat.

This full-colour illustrated book explores the natural behaviour of domestic horses and their close links to a wild ancestry. Through anecdotal stories, observation and scientific research the book looks at the complex social structure of horses, their instincts, intelligence and the rich tapestry of their emotions. It explores how closely they are connected to their environment. It looks at the evolution of horses and the challenges that face the last wild equid species of the world. It also explores new understandings of horses as valued conservation grazers that can help restore damaged habitats.
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A book that stays with you ... for ever and ever
After I got through reading this extraordinary book, it was a forest of sticky notes ... passages I wanted to revisit and ponder about. There is so much to learn here, all the way from pre-historic horses to the way our contemporary equines are hard-wired to respond to their ancestral survival instincts. According to the author's meticulous research, the natural behavior of horses hasn't changed much at all.

From there, she goes into a wealth of information that's engagingly written and keeps you turning the page. Skillfully, she weaves stories of her own horses and those of neighbors and friends into the narrative to create a compelling history of our favorite animals. Here's a bit that really got me:

"Nursing is instinctive, but finding the milk bag can be a bit of an action adventure [don't you just love this?]. Like finding the centre of a maze, all our foals took the scenic route. Patiently, a broodmare will help her foal by positioning herself alongside so that the foal faces toward her hindquarters ... often the foal will toddle straight forward and try to suckle on the wall of the stall, or walk between her hind legs without looking up and out through a curtain of tail."

Amid all the great stuff I loved about this book, was this: the right way to pronounce Przewalski's horse: 'shur-val-ski'. After all these years of tripping over this word and avoiding saying it out loud, I'm tickled to bits with this information, and can't wait to baffle horse-loving friends with it.

"Heart of a Hoofbeat" is one of those books you read and then think about, again and again. The photography is stunning, both in its depth and simplicity. When I read the last page, I sighed, put it down, and wanted to read it all over again. It had wrapped itself around me and left me feeling better for having read it.
Anne Honeywood

This book is very interesting with beautiful images of horse behavior in their natural environment. You do not need to be a horse enthusiast to enjoy or appreciate the book, it appears to have been written for anyone who loves animals. This is a great gift idea!! Thoroughly enjoyed reading and marveling at the beautiful photography.
Michelle Lewis

More about Margaret Evans


"This is a fine book that thoroughly explores the natural instincts and behavior of the domestic horse and how this behavior compares to wild horses. Impressive research, aided by often charming and humorous anecdotal stories and personal observation, provide a revealing glimpse at how horses communicate and socialize through body language and sounds and move in hierarchical bands. Insightful examples of their innate intelligence fill the pages along with how horses can contribute to the health of environments and natural habitats.

Among the many equine questions answered are why and how horses, historically, were domesticated; why they associate with each other in a unit; how they learn from elders and the extent of their ability to solve problems and remember tasks; how their bodies permit a wide range of movements including dancing; and how they play, compete and mate. One can also learn what is a bachelor band and dominant mare.

The lucid and highly readable text is complemented by many photos that illustrate the range and capabilities of horses. There are also photos of cousins to the horse as well as predators. The cover design, featuring a horse reflected in an eye’s retina, is extraordinarily eye-catching. The title is very effective." - Judge’s commentary  Writer’s Digest 21st Self-Publishing Competition 2013


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