This big, rich novel covers only a year but manages to convey an entire lifetime. Thea, the main character, is a twin, a lover of horses and a girl who wants. Unfortunately what she wants is not necessarily good for her or her family or those she loves. Sent away from her home because of her actions, she spends a year at a “camp” that is actually a cross between a finishing school for wealthy girls and a riding academy.
The background of Thea’s infraction is explored in many backflashes as the book progresses. DiSclafani gives us a whole world set in depression era southern Appalachia. Her characters are well drawn and appealing. Her descriptions provide a moody backdrop to a story filled with angst, teen girls and horses.
While the characters are teens, this is not a young adult book, but a sizzling sex tale set in a Victorian horse show. Book groups will find a plethora of topics ranging from teen sex to family roles to education of women to the importance of money among many others.