Wild Horse Annie: Friend of the Mustangs

By: Tracey Fern

Illustrator: Steven Salerno

As recently as 1971, wild mustangs were legally hunted on US public land. This finally changed, thanks to one determined woman and help from a brigade of children across the country.
Author’s note. Selected sources. Full-color illustrations.

ISBN: 9780374303068

JLG Release: Apr 2019


Sensitive Areas: Inhumane treatment of wild mustangs, Mentions of slaughterhouses
Topics: Velma Johnston (1912–1977) , Horses , Wild mustangs , Nevada , Polio , Ranches and ranchers , Animal cruelty , Local and federal government , Activism , Children , “Pencil brigade ,” US Congress , Laws , Public land

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Publishers Weekly, The Horn Book Magazine, Kirkus Reviews

Horn Book

Velma Bronn Johnston (later known as “Wild Horse Annie”) grows up in Nevada watching her father tame mustangs, and when she contracts polio at age eleven, a painting of wild mustangs helps her endure the long recovery. As an adult, Annie admires the few remaining wild horses that visit her ranch, but when she discovers herds being rounded up fo Velma Bronn Johnston (later known as “Wild Horse Annie”) grows up in Nevada watching her father tame mustangs, and when she contracts polio at age eleven, a painting of wild mustangs helps her endure the long recovery. As an adult, Annie admires the few remaining wild horses that visit her ranch, but when she discovers herds being rounded up for slaughter, she begins a letter-writing campaign to enact a ban on wild horse roundups in Nevada. With the help of a “pencil bri¬gade” of schoolchildren petitioning legislators, she’s able to win federal protection for wild horses. The text makes good use of anecdotes (for instance, how she got her nickname) and direct quotes to capture Annie’s personality and convey the personal hurdles she had to overcome to achieve her goal. Fluid, cartoonlike illus¬trations use exaggerated elongation to depict the energy Annie brings to her cause while at times adding a slant angle to her hips or shoulders that subtly suggests her lifelong disability. This look at how one motivated individual and an army of young idealists can effect change may leave readers with the encouragement needed to tackle their own campaigns. Appended with an author’s note (Fern herself, as a child, was part of Wild Horse Annie’s pencil brigade) and a selected list of sources.

Book Details

ISBN

9780374303068

First Release

April 2019

Genre

Nonfic

Dewey Classification

636.10092 B

Trim Size

Page Count

48

Accelerated Reader

Level 5.5; Points: 0.5;

Scholastic Reading Counts

Level 0; Points: 0;

Lexile

Level NC930L

Format

Print Book

Edition

Hardcover edition

Publisher

Farrar, Straus & Giroux

Potentially Sensitive Areas

Inhumane treatment of wild mustangs, Mentions of slaughterhouses

Topics

Velma Johnston (1912–1977), Horses, Wild mustangs, Nevada, Polio, Ranches and ranchers, Animal cruelty, Local and federal government, Activism, Children, “Pencil brigade,” US Congress, Laws, Public land,

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