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Books By Lauren St. John - Author
Lauren St John grew up surrounded by horses and wild animals on a farm and game reserve in Zimbabwe, the inspiration for her memoir, Rainbow’s End. After studying journalism, she relocated to the UK, where she spent nearly a decade on the European and PGA Tours as golf correspondent to the Sunday Times. She also wrote the acclaimed music biography Hardcore Troubadour: The Life & Near Death of Steve Earle. She is the author of the multi-award- winning The White Giraffe series for children, as well as the Laura Marlin mysteries, the first of which, Dead Man’s Cove, won the 2011 Blue Peter Book of the Year Award. Her bestselling One Dollar Horse series was followed by YA horse romance, The Glory, now optioned for film.
My Favourite Children’s Books by Lauren St John
For Love of a Horse by Patricia Leitch. Without doubt this is the book that inspired me most as a child. At the time I was living on a farm in Zimbabwe in Southern Africa and had a black horse called Morning Star and it seemed to me that the way I felt about him and Jinny Manders felt about the chestnut Arab mare she rescued from a circus in For Love of a Horse was identical. This series is just brilliant in every way. I’ve read each book at least five times and would happily do so again.
Journey to the River Sea by Eva Ibbotsen. To me, Eva Ibbotsen is a genius. You can pick up any of her books – The Dragonfly Pool and One Boy and His Dog are also fantastic – and be guaranteed a good read. A warm, joyous book to be enjoyed by any generation.
Five Run Away Together by Enid Blyton. I think I read my first Famous Five novel when I was six and I was hooked from that moment on. Sure there are bits of that have dated and Enid Blyton is not the world’s greatest prose stylist. But decades on, the appeal of the Famous Five is as strong as ever. Impossible to resist.
The Black Stallion by Walter Farley. The ultimate wish fulfillment fantasy, later made into an award-winning film. I’ve read this book more times than I can count and it never loses it’s magic. The film is great too.
Ring of Bright Water by Gavin Maxwell. I read this book as a set book at school in Zimbabwe and it had a big impact on me. Gavin Maxwell’s beautifully written book about his life with otters on Scotland’s remote west coast has been called a ‘masterpiece’ and ‘one of the outstanding wildlife books of all time.’ Anyone who loves animals and nature would enjoy this special book. Ring of Bright Water was later made into an outstanding film starring Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers.
The Tiger who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr. I fell in love with the smiley, chubby tiger in Judith Kerr’s classic picturebook during one hot Zimbabwe summer when I had to read it four or five times a day to my niece. If it had been up to her I’d have read it even more frequently. Each time I got to the end, she pleaded for us to begin again. Pure genius.