As a person who knows very little about horses, or even has much of an interest, the first thing I noticed was how quickly the author drew me into the topic of a family and their love for horses.
Almost immediately, 14-year-old Reece is challenged with several issues. Her horse falls and will possibly need to be put down. Her mother is killed in an accident. Her father decides working with horses is financially impossible, so he sells their horses and gear. If all of this isn’t challenging enough for a 14-year-old, her father draws away from Reece and starts dating.
Reese, for the most part, a loner with no friends, discovers some relief from her problems by offering to help Wes, a Lakota Indian who is now leasing the barn she and her family used to work from. Interestingly enough, Wes is mute by choice.
So we have Reese, who struggles with her pain by acting out, in some cases, enough to make me grit my teeth. We have her dad who is apparently trying to drown his sorrows by dating, and a horse trainer who for some reason is choosing to remain silent.