Horse: A Novel (Large Print / Paperback)
Art, science, sports, race and romance combine in Geraldine Brooks's compulsively readable new novel, Horse. In America in the 1800's thoroughbred horseracing was as popular as basketball is today, with huge crowds, large purses and fanatic owners, trainers, and fans. Horse is based on a real champion of the time, Lexington, his enslaved black trainer, Jarrett, and the plantation masters who owned them both. There is a companion storyline set in the present, when Lexington's skeleton, and a famous painting of him, are rescued from obscurity and an unlikely pair join forces to solve the mystery of their past. Geraldine Brooks won the Pulitzer Prize for March, her previous Civil War-era novel, a time period she excels at bringing to life.— Sarah
June 2022 Indie Next List
“Geraldine Brooks’ Horse is one of her very best. A story of race, love, history, slavery, and horse racing with superb writing, fascinating and complex characters, and incredible research. I can’t wait to share this with customers.”
— Vicky Titcomb, Titcomb's Bookshop, East Sandwich, MA
“Brooks’ chronological and cross-disciplinary leaps are thrilling.” —The New York Times Book Review
“Horse isn’t just an animal story—it’s a moving narrative about race and art.” —TIME
“A thrilling story about humanity in all its ugliness and beauty . . . the evocative voices create a story so powerful, reading it feels like watching a neck-and-neck horse race, galloping to its conclusion—you just can’t look away.” —Oprah Daily
Winner of the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award
A discarded painting in a junk pile, a skeleton in an attic, and the greatest racehorse in American history: from these strands, a Pulitzer Prize winner braids a sweeping story of spirit, obsession, and injustice across American history
Kentucky, 1850. An enslaved groom named Jarret and a bay foal forge a bond of understanding that will carry the horse to record-setting victories across the South. When the nation erupts in civil war, an itinerant young artist who has made his name on paintings of the racehorse takes up arms for the Union. On a perilous night, he reunites with the stallion and his groom, very far from the glamor of any racetrack.
New York City, 1954. Martha Jackson, a gallery owner celebrated for taking risks on edgy contemporary painters, becomes obsessed with a nineteenth-century equestrian oil painting of mysterious provenance.
Washington, DC, 2019. Jess, a Smithsonian scientist from Australia, and Theo, a Nigerian-American art historian, find themselves unexpectedly connected through their shared interest in the horse—one studying the stallion’s bones for clues to his power and endurance, the other uncovering the lost history of the unsung Black horsemen who were critical to his racing success.
Based on the remarkable true story of the record-breaking thoroughbred Lexington, Horse is a novel of art and science, love and obsession, and our unfinished reckoning with racism.
About the Author
Geraldine Brooks is the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel March and the international bestsellers The Secret Chord, Caleb’s Crossing, People of the Book, and Year of Wonders. She has also written the acclaimed nonfiction works Nine Parts of Desire and Foreign Correspondence. Born and raised in Australia, Brooks lives in Massachusetts.
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