Top critical review
Animal neglect and animal murder
Reviewed in the United States on October 25, 2018
This book is as much about the author's mother dying (and the aftermath) and her dysfunctional life as it is about the hike itself. Fine, that was all very interesting and well written, and I applaud the author for her honesty. After her mother died, I thought, "And who's looking after the family's animals? Horses and dogs and chickens. Pages and pages about her infidelities etc, and her regrets, and mother dying, but nothing about who then went to either re-home or look after the animals.
At 49% in the book you find out what happened! The animals have "either died themselves" (no WONDER) and her mother's stunning thoroughbred horse Lady (who had saved her mother's life and been her pride and joy) ended up shot in a botched, agonizing murder by someone (her brother, while she watched on) who had never shot a horse before. Needless to say, the horse did not die straight away but keeled down on her knees in agony in a slow death.
If the book had dedicated as many pages to the author's regret and disgust at these actions and the part she played, and a begging for forgiveness, I could have understood (maybe). But, no. It seemed that the author didn't agonize over this at all. Just mentioned it, as if she were blameless. As if she were the victim! Doing the one thing that would have BROKEN HER MOTHER'S HEART!
A woman who had enough money to buy heroine but not enough to at least pay for a vet (and how about at least TRYING to re-home Lady or send her to a refuge? Not even mentioned.
And all these readers, too, who have adored this book, did this not bother you?
How sad this world we live in when shooting a horse who has been abandoned and mistreated by self-absorbed, selfish people seems to go completely unnoticed. If it is accepted so readily in this book, no wonder there is so much animal abuse out there.