Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 9 to 12
- Grade: 4 to 7
- Reading age: 9 to 12
In the late 1850s in and around Carson City, struggles between the Indigenous and local white people are growing. During the struggles, Joselyn, a young orphan, meets Sarah Winnemucca, a Paiute girl who becomes her friend and gives her some valuable advice. When Joselyn takes that advice and escapes from the Carson City Home for Unfortunate Children, she has no idea that her boy's disguise and her love for and expertise with horses will lead her straight to the Pony Express. Joselyn becomes Jo and turns to a life that demands all her inner strength and resources. Then the meanest man on the route learns her secret and uses it to extract a promise that kept or broken could mean death.
About the author
Nikki Tate was born in Birmingham, England, but spent her childhood roaming the globe. She is the author of nearly 20 books for young readers, many of which are about horses. Nikki has always enjoyed both writing and telling stories, as well as camping, kayaking and horseback riding. She currently hosts a book club called "Teens, Titles and Tate" on CBC Radio's All Points West. Nikki lives with her family (and her collection of goats, ponies, dogs, cats and assorted feathered friends) on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Visit Nikki's website www.nikkitate.com for more information.
- Short-listed, Silver Birch nominee
- Short-listed, Western Writers of America Spur Award nominee
Excerpt: Jo's Triumph (by (author) Nikki Tate)
Flame quivered beneath me, ready to fly off the moment I asked.
"The mail's been stopped one minute and twenty seconds," Uncle Billy said. "That's more than long enough."
He slapped Flame on the rump and the horse leaped forward as if shot from a cannon. The sudden movement caught me off guard and for one horrible second I thought my career as a Pony Express rider was over before it started.
Other titles by Nikki Tate
At Home Around the World
If a Tree Falls
The Global Impact of Deforestation
Choosing to Live, Choosing to Die
The Complexities of Assisted Dying
From Solstice to Santa
Creating Community in an Uncertain World
Down To Earth
How Kids Help Feed the World
Beyond Cake and Ice Cream
How Trees Sustain Our Planet