Read The Blue Horse by Marita Conlon-McKenna Free Online
Book Title: The Blue Horse|
The author of the book: Marita Conlon-McKenna
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Loaded: 2097 times
Reader ratings: 6.8
Edition: O'Brien Press
Date of issue: March 1st 1996
ISBN 13: 9780862783051
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 859 KB
Read full description of the books:
Marita Conlon-McKenna is a well know Irish writer who specialises in children’s literature. Her books touch hearts and minds and are filled with strong storytelling, warm characters and explore family relationships. ‘The Blue Horse’ reached No. 1 on the Bestseller List and won the BISTO BOOK OF THE YEAR Award in 1993.
In this story, Marita tackles a difficult topic, life as a traveller and the discrimination they face. The main character in this story is Katie Connors who is a traveller. Katie's whole world is turned upside down when her family's home is destroyed by fire. She is forced to live as a settled traveller after their caravan burns down. Her father can’t cope moving to a house among the settled community. “No woman or children will tie me down. I’ll not live in a house like settled people!” Instead of pulling together it seems as though her family is falling apart.
She faces prejudice and bullying in school and a hairdresser refuses to cut her hair because she’s a traveller. However, some people were kind and accepting of the different culture. The Connors next door neighbour is very kind to Katie’s mother and Katie does make a new friend in school. She also gains confidence through woodwork class where she makes a wooden horse and paints it blue to replace the one lost in the fire.
I enjoyed reading this story as it highlighted various themes. There was an emphasis on social issues, school life, bullying, friendships, family relations and prejudice. I think this book would be suitable for children aged 10-12. ‘The Blue Horse’ could be used in a classroom discussion focusing on social issues and how to tackle problems like bullying. I think children would find this book interesting as it deals with real life issues which will encourage them to have an open mind about people who have views dissimilar to their own.
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Read information about the authorBorn in Dublin in 1956 and brought up in Goatstown, Marita went to school at the Convent of the Sacred Heart, Mount Anville, later working in the family business, the bank, and a travel agency. She has four children with her husband James, and they live in the Stillorgan area of Dublin.
Marita was always fascinated by the Famine period in Irish history and read everything available on the subject. When she heard a radio report of an unmarked children's grave from the Famine period being found under a hawthorn tree, she decided to write her first book, Under the Hawthorn Tree.
Published in May 1990, the book was an immediate success and become a classic. It has been translated into over a dozen languages, including Arabic, Bahasa, French, Dutch, German, Swedish, Italian, Japanese and Irish. The book has been read on RTÉ Radio and is very popular in schools, both with teachers and pupils. It has been made a supplementary curriculum reader in many schools and is also used by schools in Northern Ireland for EMU (Education through Mutual Understanding) projects. It was also filmed by Young Irish Film Makers, in association with RTÉ and Channel 4. This is available as a DVD.
Marita has written more books for children which were also very well received. The Blue Horse reached No. 1 on the Bestseller List and won the BISTO BOOK OF THE YEAR Award. No Goodbye, which tells of the heartbreak of a young family when their mother leaves home, was recommended by Book Trust in their guide for One Parent Families. Safe Harbour is the story of two English children evacuated from London during World War ll to live with their grandfather in Greystones, Co Wicklow and was shortlisted for the BISTO Book of the Year Award. A Girl Called Blue follows the life of an orphan, trying to find who she really is in a cold and strict orphanage. Marita has also explored the world of fantasy with her book In Deep Dark Wood.
Marita has won several awards, including the International Reading Association Award, the Osterreichischer Kinder und Jugendbuchpreis, the Reading Association of Ireland Award and the Bisto Book of the Year Award.
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