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A powerful tale of war, redemption and a hero's journey. In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey's courage touches A powerful tale of war, redemption and a hero's journey. In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey's courage touches the soldiers around him and he is able to find warmth and hope. But his heart aches for Albert, the farmer's son he left behind. Will he ever see his true master again?


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A powerful tale of war, redemption and a hero's journey. In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey's courage touches A powerful tale of war, redemption and a hero's journey. In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey's courage touches the soldiers around him and he is able to find warmth and hope. But his heart aches for Albert, the farmer's son he left behind. Will he ever see his true master again?

30 review for War Horse

  1. 4 out of 5

    Will Byrnes

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. In the tradition of National Velvet and Black Beauty, War Horse is a moving tale of a horse and a time. The horse is Joey. The time is World War One. After bonding with thirteen-year-old Albert at the family farm, Joey is sold to the Army by Albert’s struggling dad. And so the adventure and a series of encounters with a wide range of people begins. An image from Spielberg's magnificent film - from AOL They run the course from a loving teenage French girl to cruel Teutonic warriors, from kindly B In the tradition of National Velvet and Black Beauty, War Horse is a moving tale of a horse and a time. The horse is Joey. The time is World War One. After bonding with thirteen-year-old Albert at the family farm, Joey is sold to the Army by Albert’s struggling dad. And so the adventure and a series of encounters with a wide range of people begins. An image from Spielberg's magnificent film - from AOL They run the course from a loving teenage French girl to cruel Teutonic warriors, from kindly British officers to equally generous German soldiers. Joey bonds with another horse in his tour of duty, as a sort of big brother. Even without dialogue Morpurgo conveys their attachment. This is a book clearly written for a YA reader, maybe even a Y without the A. It is written simply and is easy to read. Joey is presented as a remarkable steed, and is lavished with enough appreciation to make an adult gag at times, but keep the hankies handy as there is very moving heartbreak as well. In addition, Morpurgo offers commentary on war and a look at the horrors entailed in that War To End All Wars. War Horse is a fast, enjoyable, emotion-rich read, even for an old oater like me. I read this in anticipation of the film being released in December 2011. It was, IMHO, amazing, not only capturing the essence of the book, but doing so in a lush, classical format that was a pure joy to behold. So it's sappy. So what? It is a great film that does justice to a great book. And John Williams' score for the film was spectacular as well.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    War Horse (War Horse #1), Michael Morpurgo War Horse is a children's novel by British author Michael Morpurgo. It was first published in 1982. The story recounts the experiences of Joey, a horse purchased by the Army for service in World War I France and the attempts of young Albert, his previous owner, to bring him safely home. It formed the basis of both an award winning play (2007) and an acclaimed film adaptation (2011) by Steven Spielberg. تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز ششم ماه نوامبر سال 2013میلاد War Horse (War Horse #1), Michael Morpurgo War Horse is a children's novel by British author Michael Morpurgo. It was first published in 1982. The story recounts the experiences of Joey, a horse purchased by the Army for service in World War I France and the attempts of young Albert, his previous owner, to bring him safely home. It formed the basis of both an award winning play (2007) and an acclaimed film adaptation (2011) by Steven Spielberg. تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز ششم ماه نوامبر سال 2013میلادی عنوان: اسب جنگی؛ نویسنده: مایکل مورپرگو؛ مترجم: پروین علی پور؛ تهران، افق، چاپ دوم 1392؛ ئر 189ص؛ موضوع: داستانهای نوجوانان از نویسندگان انگلیسی - سده 20م هشدار برای آنان که که کتاب را میخواهند بخوانند، لطفا از ادامه خوانش خودداری فرمایید؛ استیون اسپیلبرگ، از این داستان فیلمی دیدنی ساخته، و پرداخته اند؛ «جویی» نام اسب جوانی است، که مزرعه داری خریداریش میکند؛ پسرش «آلبرت»، تیمار «جویی» را، به گردن میگیرد، و دل به «جویی» میسپارد؛ او بارها و بارها، به سبب رفتار نامناسب پدرش، با «جویی»، با پدر خویش درگیر میشود؛ جنگ جهانگیر نخست آغاز میگردد، و پدر مزرعه دار، به دلیل بدهی، و بی خبر از پسر خویش، «جویی» را به سروان «نیکلاس»، افسر مهربان سواره نظام، که از جنگ دل خوشی ندارد، میفروشد؛ پس از کشته شدن سروان ...؛ «آلبرت» نیز داوطلبانه، به خدمت سربازی، و به اروپای در حال جنگ پای می‌گذارد؛ ...، دو سرباز یکی «انگلیسی»، و دیگری «آلمانی»، زیر آتش دشمن، برای نجات جان «جویی»، جان خویش را به خطر می‌اندازند؛ پس از نجات اسب، آن دو برای تصاحب اسب، تنها با یک شیر یا خط، غائله را پایان می‌دهند، و هیچ درگیری فیزیکی بین آن دو، رخ نمی‌دهد؛ سرباز «آلمانی» پیشنهاد میکند، کشتی بگیرند، اما سرباز انگلیسی، شیر یا خط را پیشنهاد می‌کند، و همه چیز مسالمت آمیز پایان می‌یابد، و آن دو با دست دادن با یکدیگر، به سران و دولتهای جنگ‌ افروز خود، پیام صلح می‌دهند؛ چند سال پیشتر هم همین کتاب را خوانده بودم، دیشب (روز هشتم ماه اکتبر سال 2015میلادی) کنار تختم بود، گفتم دوباره یک دو فصل میخوانم تا خوابم ببرد، ساعت پنج صبح 189ص دوباره پایان یافت تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 12/08/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی

  3. 5 out of 5

    P

    “I can hate you more, but I'll never love you less.” This book is so beautiful in many ways. I wanted to weep all day after I finished. War Horse is very unique because it's told by Joey, a horse being thrusted into the war on the Western Front. The story is innocent, yet it's so sensational and full of angst from the characters. I felt attached to the story from the first chapter and couldn't peel my eyes off then. Morpugo created such a striking story about the war with a horse and a boy t “I can hate you more, but I'll never love you less.” This book is so beautiful in many ways. I wanted to weep all day after I finished. War Horse is very unique because it's told by Joey, a horse being thrusted into the war on the Western Front. The story is innocent, yet it's so sensational and full of angst from the characters. I felt attached to the story from the first chapter and couldn't peel my eyes off then. Morpugo created such a striking story about the war with a horse and a boy trying to find each other. I could perceive about everything through this book and lost a lot of tears by reading only. “They fight a war and they don't know what for. Isn't that crazy? How can one man kill another and not really know the reason why he does it, except that the other man wears a different color uniform and speaks a different language?” I can read this book and watch the movie without getting bored. And Tom Hiddleston always slay me with his acting skills. http://goo.gl/l0memd

  4. 5 out of 5

    Leonard Gaya

    War Horse is one of the best-known children’s novels by Michael Morpurgo. And it is an enormously poignant little book. As the title suggests, it is the odyssey of a horse, Joey, brought from Devon across the English Channel and into France and the hell of the Great War, both through the English and the German trenches. The story is narrated in simple language (in, say, the tradition of Ernest Hemingway) from the unusual perspective of the horse. And this is done with an incredible sense of human War Horse is one of the best-known children’s novels by Michael Morpurgo. And it is an enormously poignant little book. As the title suggests, it is the odyssey of a horse, Joey, brought from Devon across the English Channel and into France and the hell of the Great War, both through the English and the German trenches. The story is narrated in simple language (in, say, the tradition of Ernest Hemingway) from the unusual perspective of the horse. And this is done with an incredible sense of humanity and compassion, not just for Joey, but for all the men and women who lived, suffered and died during this long and most absurd butchery. Spielberg’s adaptation to the screen is probably one of his best war movies, although we mostly lose the horse’s point of view.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Dem

    Small Books can often leave big impressions and this is the case with War Horse by Michael Morpurgo. Michael Murpurgo writes wonderful children's novels and I had loved some of his books very much and War Horse is one of those books that leaves a lasting impression. This is not a novel with a complicated plot or twists and turns but a beautiful story simply told and I find sometimes these can be the best. Warhorse is a moving story about a horse called Joey and his experiences during service in th Small Books can often leave big impressions and this is the case with War Horse by Michael Morpurgo. Michael Murpurgo writes wonderful children's novels and I had loved some of his books very much and War Horse is one of those books that leaves a lasting impression. This is not a novel with a complicated plot or twists and turns but a beautiful story simply told and I find sometimes these can be the best. Warhorse is a moving story about a horse called Joey and his experiences during service in the first world war. Joey a farmhorse is sold to the army and witnesses battle from both side of the trenches. This book is aimed at the 9-12 year old market(but can be enjoyed by readers of any age) and the author really knows how to tell a story and how to educate his reader while doing so. I found the war scenes appropriate for the age group this book was aimed at and yet enough to make the reader feel the horrors of war. I loved the way Joey the horse seemed to give hope to the men on the battlefield and while war was all around them the horses gave the soldiers a sense of calm and hope. I bought this book for my ten year old and as the film War Horse is now showing in the cinema I wanted to read the book before seeing the movie and I really enjoyed this book. One of my favourite books by Michael Murpurgo is Private Peaceful.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Mario

    If somebody told me that book written in horse's POV would be this emotional, I wouldn't have believed it. From page one, I knew that this wasn't going to be happy and light read (even in chapter 1 so much happened). It dealt with war, and how unfair and stupid it is. But it also dealt with so much more than that. It's a story about friendship, loyalty, love and survival. And I felt like this book was so much longer than it actually was. I guess that is because so much happened in it. But surpris If somebody told me that book written in horse's POV would be this emotional, I wouldn't have believed it. From page one, I knew that this wasn't going to be happy and light read (even in chapter 1 so much happened). It dealt with war, and how unfair and stupid it is. But it also dealt with so much more than that. It's a story about friendship, loyalty, love and survival. And I felt like this book was so much longer than it actually was. I guess that is because so much happened in it. But surprisingly, even though it was short, not one part of this book felt rushed (at least to me). Now off to see the movie. Hopefully it'll stay faithful to the book.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Emily B

    A beautiful and touching story. Not overly complicated or grim but simple and clean and easy to follow but also easy to care about the characters.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Erastes

    I'm clearly the only person in the world who doesn't like, doesn't get, this book. The horse is a Gary Stu (See here if you don't know what one of those is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Sue) - he knows everything, from what guns and cannons are, to what wire is and what it can do, the terms for everythng in his world, including politics and the type of bit in his mouth. I'm used to anthropomorphic animals, and have been since I was born--but Joey should be dressed up in a waistcoat and walking I'm clearly the only person in the world who doesn't like, doesn't get, this book. The horse is a Gary Stu (See here if you don't know what one of those is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Sue) - he knows everything, from what guns and cannons are, to what wire is and what it can do, the terms for everythng in his world, including politics and the type of bit in his mouth. I'm used to anthropomorphic animals, and have been since I was born--but Joey should be dressed up in a waistcoat and walking on his hind legs because he has the human intelligence of one of the pigs from Animal Farm or Benjamin Bunny. When you compare this style of "horse point of view" with Black Beauty or something well done like Watership Down, you can see the failings. In Watership Down, the rabbits didn't understand CONCEPTS such as "a road" - they see a hard river that smells wrong - and elil run up and down the road, not hunting the rabbits, but as deadly as anything else in their world. Whilst they learn how to cope with the road, they never understand it. But Joey understands everything, both ideas and concepts--and that's just irritating. He knows English, despite having no horse communication at all - then when he's abroad, he understands German and French! someone has said that this aspect of it emphasises the anti-war message, but I'm afraid I just don't get that at all. A horse is a fight or flight animal--its instinct is to run away and I'm afraid that MM doesn't represent a horse at all in this book. He's simply telling the story of a man in a horse's body, and really--it would have been a better book if he'd told it from the point of view of a man. I understand that I'm one lone voice in the wilderness here, though, so I doubt anyone will agree with me.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie *Extremely Stable Genius*

    I listened to this on audio and was listening to this while making my way to a ‘gig’ at Wooster College in Ohio, where I was to draw caricatures. Drawing caricatures for the public requires a certain amount of upbeat interaction, so it might not have been a good time to cry over Joey the War Horse. I hope my Eyes weren’t all puffy. Joey is a special horse. Special enough to be purchased to serve in the first world war as a Calvary horse. But the whole time he is in the war he longs for the day he I listened to this on audio and was listening to this while making my way to a ‘gig’ at Wooster College in Ohio, where I was to draw caricatures. Drawing caricatures for the public requires a certain amount of upbeat interaction, so it might not have been a good time to cry over Joey the War Horse. I hope my Eyes weren’t all puffy. Joey is a special horse. Special enough to be purchased to serve in the first world war as a Calvary horse. But the whole time he is in the war he longs for the day he can go home to his boy, Albert. Joey was sold to the war effort against Albert’s wishes by his father and Albert vows to join up when he’s old enough and bring his horse back against all odds. Joey’s time was not easy in the war. Quite frankly he went through hell. He suffers many losses along the way, but he keeps going. Will he find Albert? Read it and find out. This is a wonderful little book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    A book about war. About fighting and surviving. A book about friendship and loyalty. And about death and grief and moving on. Written from the POV of a horse, this book was absolutely breathtaking. And honetsly, not only the book. I cried when I read the book and I cried even harder when I watched the movie. It was one of the few books I read that was actually about WWI. Since so many books are about the Second World War I was very intrigued about a book that pictured the First one! The main part A book about war. About fighting and surviving. A book about friendship and loyalty. And about death and grief and moving on. Written from the POV of a horse, this book was absolutely breathtaking. And honetsly, not only the book. I cried when I read the book and I cried even harder when I watched the movie. It was one of the few books I read that was actually about WWI. Since so many books are about the Second World War I was very intrigued about a book that pictured the First one! The main part is of course Joey and how he survived during the war, how he helped and how human beings actually helped him. He was such an observing and loyal and caring and loving character. I am very sceptical about animal POV's but this one was remarkably beautiful. I would choose Joey over nearly every other book protagonist. But then there was also Joey's particular strong bound to some of them like first and foremost Albert. Albert taught Joey things that saved his life more than just once. Besides, Albert promised to find him, he was his first and most important friend. Then, there was the very gentle and wise Captain Nicholls who reminded me on an older version of Albert and Major Stewart with his horse Topthorn who soon became Joey's best friend during the war. Every character who was mentioned in the book was in its own way important and showed a particular view on life and the war. Every single character actually loved and appreciated the horses, everyone cared! This book was short, but it was strong and it was beautiful. I loved every sentence, every word and every character and plot twist! I highly recommend the book to everyone and I also recommend the movie that turned out to be a little bit different than the book, but it was still breathtaking!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Trish

    This story wrecked me. It's a children's book but definitely of a dark(er) nature as it deals with experiences from WWI. And it is all written from the persective of Joey, the titular horse. Joey was sold to a farm when young. There, he met Albert, his friend, brother, master. Albert's father, who bought Joey when drunk to stick it to a neighbouring farmer, is not a man one can like (easily), but Albert is not only young and idealistic but also kind and gentle. One day, Joey is sold to the Army f This story wrecked me. It's a children's book but definitely of a dark(er) nature as it deals with experiences from WWI. And it is all written from the persective of Joey, the titular horse. Joey was sold to a farm when young. There, he met Albert, his friend, brother, master. Albert's father, who bought Joey when drunk to stick it to a neighbouring farmer, is not a man one can like (easily), but Albert is not only young and idealistic but also kind and gentle. One day, Joey is sold to the Army for the war and taken away from Albert. During the war, Joey meets another war horse as well as a number of people - soldiers of all ranks, civilians from different walks of life, ... Thus, this is the story of youth growing up (the horse as well as the boy), the horrors of war (especially this war as the author doesn't neglect to also point out some of the new inventions used for the first time during WWI and describe their effects both physically and psychologically), grief and loss, hope, love, and faithfulness. World War I was not just horrible, but gave the word "horrible" a whole new dimension. There are many accounts out there but reading about such a scale of pain and suffering is never easy, no matter if the facts are conveyed in a non-fiction book or through fictionalized accounts. This book is no different. Add to that the fact that it is from an animal's perspective and you might understand why I cried so hard as seldomly before. The writing is simple and yet intricately detailed, every landscape comes to life and the people as well as animals are wonderfully portrayed with the appropriate layers to their personality traits. This is also a Folio Society edition, meaning it is an illustrated version of the book. And what illustrations! Alan Marks not only added little sketches in some chapters but contributed these wonderful colour illustrations as well: The icing on the cake, if you will, is this bookmark that was designed specially for this edition:

  12. 4 out of 5

    BAM Endlessly Booked

    Such a touching hero's tale and such a daring point of view for its audience. I am not an animal person (to the chagrin of my family members) and the beginning chapters of this book just ripped my heart out of my chest and stomped on it. For Joey to be a survivor and still have such love in his soul is so moving.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Joshie

    Childhood memories always appear like pixelated images you can't fully decipher. Whenever someone asks me what my earliest childhood book memory it often goes back to little me clutching and reading Black Beauty on the living room floor. Reading War Horse gave me the same childhood innocence and affection — deeply caring over another horse, Joey (another unforgettable horse of literature for me was Orwell's Boxer in Animal Farm), as he ventured in a world at war, of violence and cruelty, and fin Childhood memories always appear like pixelated images you can't fully decipher. Whenever someone asks me what my earliest childhood book memory it often goes back to little me clutching and reading Black Beauty on the living room floor. Reading War Horse gave me the same childhood innocence and affection — deeply caring over another horse, Joey (another unforgettable horse of literature for me was Orwell's Boxer in Animal Farm), as he ventured in a world at war, of violence and cruelty, and find kindness, camaraderie, and family. I have always been a skeptic of people's true intention and although War Horse can be mawkish, at times slightly unbelievable, the bond and connection between animals and humans whilst blood was meaninglessly shed, were heartrending. I sniffed and got teary-eyed at some parts of the story, these being (view spoiler)[Joey and Albert's reunion (hide spoiler)] and (view spoiler)[Topthorn's eventual death (hide spoiler)] . I try my best to avoid books focusing on animals but sometimes I have to give in. It's impossible to refute animals' impact, I believe, just like nature have, in our little human lives. My copy is a Folio Society Edition where the stunning illustrations made reading War Horse a personal and engaging experience:

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Edwards

    Such a beautiful story. Watched the film immediately after reading and couldn’t stop crying.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Manybooks

    With this poignant and heart-wrenching novel, with his War Horse, author Michael Morpurgo (while of course focussing primarily on the main character, a so-called war horse, who like Anna Sewell's Black Beauty, personally narrates his own story) demonstrates both clearly and also rather painfully not only the utter futility and wanton destructiveness of war in a general sense, but that like poor Joey, the common foot soldiers (in this particular case, the British and German soldiers of WWI) are b With this poignant and heart-wrenching novel, with his War Horse, author Michael Morpurgo (while of course focussing primarily on the main character, a so-called war horse, who like Anna Sewell's Black Beauty, personally narrates his own story) demonstrates both clearly and also rather painfully not only the utter futility and wanton destructiveness of war in a general sense, but that like poor Joey, the common foot soldiers (in this particular case, the British and German soldiers of WWI) are basically and for all intents and purposes similarly and simply, tragically, disposable pawns in a deadly, pernicious game (one that is gleefully played by the TRUE culprits, high army officers both German and British, the respective governments of England and Germany, while common soldiers, and yes, their horses, are being slaughtered en masse, and that the former therefore share equal blame, equal condemnation). For while many if not perhaps even a majority of the soldiers, the enlisted men (although they generally engage in their so-called duties without rebellion or complaint) would rather the war were over, would rather perhaps even not consider their counterparts across the trenches as enemies, the officers generally frown upon this attitude, and the German and British governments actually both seem to want and desire the war to continue unabated (or at least, it certainly appears as though this is the very much case). And truly, the Welsh soldier who rescues Joey when the war horse becomes trapped in No Man's Land clearly underscores the above and salient, frustrating factoid of war when he points out to a German soldier (who is also trying to rescue Joey) that if it were up to the individual soldiers (both German and British) the whole war, which he rightfully labels a wretched mess, could likely be over and sorted out in record time, and there would be no more weeping widows, no more crying children (and no more horses used as basically cannon fodder, worked into the ground until they either collapse or are horribly injured, are killed in battle). WWI, but actually ANY war, period, is thus and fortunately portrayed by the author as never in any way glorious, as always utter madness and wanton destruction, as an all-encompassing evil that serves no purpose except death and mayhem. Morpurgo's War Horse presents an evocative, poignant and brilliant anti-war message, whilst also showing that historically, the so called Great War (WWI) was also not the fault of any one country, that it was a lethal and dangerous horror for which ALL of Europe, but especially the respective governments, the higher ups, from ranking army officers to the various European heads of state should blamed, should be held equally accountable.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sheila Goicea

    See my FULL review of this book on my blog along with others at: shesgoingbookcrazy.com ”That’s what war is all about, my friend. It’s about which of us is the madder.” I remember when I saw this movie when it first came out in theatre. At the time, I didn’t realize it was an adaptation from a book. Naturally, when I learned of its origins, I had to read the book as well! War Horse is told in a similar fashion to Black Beauty, as it is told from the horse’s (Joey’s) perspective. While this point See my FULL review of this book on my blog along with others at: shesgoingbookcrazy.com ”That’s what war is all about, my friend. It’s about which of us is the madder.” I remember when I saw this movie when it first came out in theatre. At the time, I didn’t realize it was an adaptation from a book. Naturally, when I learned of its origins, I had to read the book as well! War Horse is told in a similar fashion to Black Beauty, as it is told from the horse’s (Joey’s) perspective. While this point-of-view may be slightly limiting as it leaves out a lot of human emotion, I appreciated how it simplified the narration and actually made everything come across more bluntly. Just like humans, Joey and the other horses felt and experienced raw emotions throughout the war. Fear, anxiety, comradery, sacrifice--however, they came across without jadedness. Unlike humans, animals feel emotions without complications. This narration bled into the human characters throughout that were pivotal in Joey’s story, as their complicated situations were unraveled to reveal the jewels underneath. The main point about this book that I love is the theme of human value. Despite the fact of there being a war going on, there weren’t any ruthless characters that only wanted to kill, kill, kill. Everyone had a sense of general right and wrong and understood the fact that war is ugly, traumatic, complicated, and tiresome. ”The horse is yours. Take good care of him, my friend,” and he picked up the rope again and handed it to the Welshman. As he did so he held out his other hand in a gesture of friendship and reconciliation, a smile lighting his worn face. “In an hour, maybe, or two,” he said, “We will be trying to our best again each other to kill. God only knows why we do it, and I think he has maybe forgotten why. Goodby Welshman. We have shown them, haven’t we? We have shown them that any problem can be solved between people if only they can trust each other. That is all it needs, no?” This element of humanity is undeniably prevalent in a pure form to show how humans can only take so much. For a majority of this war, the people didn’t even know what they were fighting for. They didn’t hate each other--they knew they were all equals, and they respected each other in that. Comparably, the theme of friendship is very strong. Deep friendships between men, horses, and men to horses, exist in several examples. Albert and Joey--Joey and Captain Nicholls--Joey and Topthorn--Joey, Topthorn, and Emilie, and several other connections overflow this book with friendship. I believe this is the aspect which makes this book so emotional because the deepness of affection between characters in untainted ways is tangible. It’s so tangible, in fact, that several characters willingly faced their fears in order to sacrifice for one another. This book is devastatingly heart-wrenching at times but makes you feel so good at others. It’s a short read, but is packed full of virtue, respectful characters, and honorable missions--both by horse and man. It was a refreshing read and completely cleansed my palate. This book is aimed at children to young adults, but can easily be read and appreciated by someone of any age. I would highly recommend this read to anyone. Vulgarity: The “H” word is only used once. Sexual content: None at all. Violence: Seeing how this book is about WWI, the evidence of violence is there. However, the author does a wonderful job in its portrayal and steers clear of gore, unnecessarily graphic scenes, and the like. My Rating: ★★★★★ My Blog ¦ Bookstagram ¦ Twitter ¦ Pinterest ¦ Facebook

  17. 4 out of 5

    Karen & Gerard

    This is a double wow book for me! Joey, the war horse, tells about his adventures during World War 1 and the special bond he has with a young boy named Albert. At only 160 pages or so, it goes very fast. I loved it! I look forward to seeing the movie which is coming out on Christmas. (Gerard's review) War Horse is a touching book that kept my interest all through. Although it is a children's book, I enjoyed it but must admit I got teary-eyed reading it. Parts were very sad but I loved the ending! This is a double wow book for me! Joey, the war horse, tells about his adventures during World War 1 and the special bond he has with a young boy named Albert. At only 160 pages or so, it goes very fast. I loved it! I look forward to seeing the movie which is coming out on Christmas. (Gerard's review) War Horse is a touching book that kept my interest all through. Although it is a children's book, I enjoyed it but must admit I got teary-eyed reading it. Parts were very sad but I loved the ending! Joey, the horse, tells his story about living on a farm with a boy named Albert and then being sold to the army because Albert's dad needed money to save his farm. The horse goes through a lot but Albert never gives up looking for him. (Karen's review)

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lucy

    4.5 Stars Wow! This was so close to being 5 stars I wish it was LONGER! This is an emotional and heart-warming story all told through one brave horse’s experience of war. I mean this book really got me in the feels amazingly written and unexpectedly emotional. I am not always 100% on war film but this really was a beautiful book! I’m not an emotional person and this one nearly had me crying a few times I LOVE joey and I don’t even like horses. "‘Why does this war have to destroy anything and every 4.5 Stars Wow! This was so close to being 5 stars I wish it was LONGER! This is an emotional and heart-warming story all told through one brave horse’s experience of war. I mean this book really got me in the feels amazingly written and unexpectedly emotional. I am not always 100% on war film but this really was a beautiful book! I’m not an emotional person and this one nearly had me crying a few times I LOVE joey and I don’t even like horses. "‘Why does this war have to destroy anything and everything that’s fine and beautiful?’ “They fight a war and they don't know what for. Isn't that crazy? How can one man kill another and not really know the reason why he does it, except that the other man wears a different color uniform and speaks a different language?” As well as being exceptionally emotive I was also clever and very well written. A brilliant story especially for kids to understand the history of war there wasn’t any blood or guts but it was still just scary and true. Honestly I can’t say anything bad about this book other than to make it at least double the size! Worth every second spent on this which really wasn’t a lot!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Chris Horsefield

    This was probably not intended as a children's book, it has plenty for the adult reader, offering more depth than many books written for adults for adults. The narrative style is sufficiently engaging that it has great potential for reading at a single sitting. Making Joey, the (war) horse, the narrator was a brilliant move on Michael Morpurgo's part, since it simultaneously encourages children to think about the effect of their actions on others (for who could not empathise with Joey?) and helps This was probably not intended as a children's book, it has plenty for the adult reader, offering more depth than many books written for adults for adults. The narrative style is sufficiently engaging that it has great potential for reading at a single sitting. Making Joey, the (war) horse, the narrator was a brilliant move on Michael Morpurgo's part, since it simultaneously encourages children to think about the effect of their actions on others (for who could not empathise with Joey?) and helps to show that neither humanity - nor not a lack of it - observes geographical or political borders. Children will learn a lot about the First World War and readers young and old will appreciate the various roles of the horse in warfare on both sides. An excellent read.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    One of those books where the movie makes a big splash and then you realize, hey, it was a book first?! Being someone who feels traumatized by Black Beauty even years later, I didn't plan on reading this. But my 11yo read it for Battle of the Books, and to my SHOCK she (the child who is still talking about how sad The One and Only Ivan is) loved this and urged me to read it. So I did! And I loved it. Joey is great, and I liked how "horsey" it was without being too pedantic. Short, interesting, an One of those books where the movie makes a big splash and then you realize, hey, it was a book first?! Being someone who feels traumatized by Black Beauty even years later, I didn't plan on reading this. But my 11yo read it for Battle of the Books, and to my SHOCK she (the child who is still talking about how sad The One and Only Ivan is) loved this and urged me to read it. So I did! And I loved it. Joey is great, and I liked how "horsey" it was without being too pedantic. Short, interesting, and not too depressing! And the movie is excellent as well. BUT TOPTHORN! *sobs*

  21. 4 out of 5

    Viv JM

    I read this with my 12 year old son. Heartwarming stuff! There may have been a few tears...

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    I thought the movie was just OK since Hollywood rarely does horses well. The incessant snorting about drove me crazy, so when I ran across this audio book at the library, I thought I'd see if the book was better. It was & it turns out the movie was fairly faithful to the book, so bring plenty of tissues. It reminds me a lot of "Black Beauty" since it is told from the horse's point of view. Yes, it's a bit sappy at times, but not terribly often & gives a great view of WWI. Better yet, it's short, I thought the movie was just OK since Hollywood rarely does horses well. The incessant snorting about drove me crazy, so when I ran across this audio book at the library, I thought I'd see if the book was better. It was & it turns out the movie was fairly faithful to the book, so bring plenty of tissues. It reminds me a lot of "Black Beauty" since it is told from the horse's point of view. Yes, it's a bit sappy at times, but not terribly often & gives a great view of WWI. Better yet, it's short, so there is no excuse not to read this. Go get it now.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Dillon

    I love this book! I read it about a month ago and it melted my heart. The book takes place during World War I and is from the view of Horses who are put in battle. The main horse was taken from his friend who is a farm boy. The book is sad and I loved it when the Horse was being taken care of by one of the army men. This is a short book and I would highly recommend it. 4.5/5 stars for this book. Thank you Michael Morpurgo for writing this book. :)

  24. 4 out of 5

    Kaitlin

    This is a children's book which I picked up completely by chance. I am currently studying Graphic Design and there happens to be a project which requires illustrating this book and so naturally I had to read it in order to know how to illustrate it, and my goodness I am so happy I did choose to pick this up!! This is a story which is told from the point of view of a Horse named Joey. I wouldn't have expected a book described in that way to come across as well and as emotionally as it has, but hon This is a children's book which I picked up completely by chance. I am currently studying Graphic Design and there happens to be a project which requires illustrating this book and so naturally I had to read it in order to know how to illustrate it, and my goodness I am so happy I did choose to pick this up!! This is a story which is told from the point of view of a Horse named Joey. I wouldn't have expected a book described in that way to come across as well and as emotionally as it has, but honestly it was moving, touching and definitely had my eyes brimming with tears at the end. This deals with the story of a horse who gets pulled into the madness of the War and the various place, people and tragedies he becomes entangled with. Right from the outset it is sad, and gut-wrenching with some reference to drunkards and war, but oh wow does it get more bleak. We see betrayal, sadness, death, injury and loneliness not just for Joey but also for those he meets along the way and it's really tragic. This story, despite being only 200 pages, it flawless. it deals with the themes and ideas of war in a really evocative way because we get to see it through the eyes of an animal who doesn't fully 'get' why the humans would do such things. We see tenderness and love towards our creature, but also horrors and atrocities, and it's all blended in such a way that you can never tell if it will be happy or sad in the end. I have to say it's just beautifully paced and the story never felt rushed or overdone. On the whole, this is a beautifully thought-provoking story which deals with some very real themes in a way that enables younger readers to approach and understand the topics. It's not just a book for younger readers though, I have only just read it and I am 21, and it really hit me, so it's a book I'd certainly recommend. A solid 4.5*s and I am very eager to try my best to illustrate and design for this lovely tale as part of my project now. I think I will need to take the raw emotion I felt whilst reading and try to channel it into the images... wish me luck, and go read this if you haven't... it won't take long and it's beautiful!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Hope

    This book, y'all. This book is simply amazing. It's beautiful and heartbreaking and action-packed and all in all fantastic. While the writing style is simplistic and almost middle-grade in nature, the plot is most definitely not. It forces the reader to face complex issues like the passing away of tradition and how war used to be fought. How we now see war--as a bloody, heartless machine--is just beginning to emerge. While war was still brutal (can we talk about all the gassing that went on in t This book, y'all. This book is simply amazing. It's beautiful and heartbreaking and action-packed and all in all fantastic. While the writing style is simplistic and almost middle-grade in nature, the plot is most definitely not. It forces the reader to face complex issues like the passing away of tradition and how war used to be fought. How we now see war--as a bloody, heartless machine--is just beginning to emerge. While war was still brutal (can we talk about all the gassing that went on in this war?? and all those bayonet charges in previous wars??), the battle of creature versus machine began to emerge. We have the beginnings of tanks and machine guns, both of which are super destructive during this war. Sorry to give you guys a history lesson, but I think this book so eloquently talks about these issues. This book isn't a light, fluffy read by any means. It's hard. We see the hardships and fears of war up close. Most of the violence is off-screen and there are definitely some scenes that should be skipped or glazed over for younger kids. But there is also some good. This book does a good job of looking at the humanity of both sides. Both sides see the tragedy and ugly parts of the war. Both sides wish to protect their homes yet quickly return to the way things were. Both sides wish that innocents weren't involved in such a disgusting display. This book is one of my favorites because of its complexity and heaviness. It's heartbreaking and ends on a bittersweet note (spoilers??). I would totally recommend this to a history buff or someone looking for an eye-opening read.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Tristan Robin Blakeman

    Very interesting book...and quite touching, in a clean and non-cloying way. I am familiar with the play, so I knew the basic plot line. I wish I had read the book first ... the play is SO powerful - and so theatrically charged with the larger-than-life stage puppets who play the horses - that the book seemed somewhat small to me. But, that's okay. It's really a small story - even though it's played against the world stage during intense and climatic moments. It was a surprise to find the book is w Very interesting book...and quite touching, in a clean and non-cloying way. I am familiar with the play, so I knew the basic plot line. I wish I had read the book first ... the play is SO powerful - and so theatrically charged with the larger-than-life stage puppets who play the horses - that the book seemed somewhat small to me. But, that's okay. It's really a small story - even though it's played against the world stage during intense and climatic moments. It was a surprise to find the book is written in the first person - by the horse! Now, if I had known that, I might not have read it (it's just too cute an idea for me), and I would have been the real loser. Because it is completely believable and the way Joey (the war horse) reacts to people and other horses gives him a well-defined and completely rounded character. I truly care about this horse. The writing is crisp and clean. No messy, paragraph-long descriptions of the battlegrounds or the lovely British countryside where the story begins and ends - yet, it is pitch perfect worded in a way that you can see every detail. The emotions of both people and horses are handled in the same efficient and heart felt way. I highly recommend - to EVERYBODY! This isn't a war story, a horse story, a kid's story, a soldier's story - it a story of dignified loyalty and love that is rarely told as well.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ken

    Having seen the amazing theatre production in London, I just had to read the book! Set during the First World War the story is told through the eyes of horse Joey and he’s relationship with a young boy called Albert. Though written for a younger audience, Morpurgo doesn’t shy award from the horrors of this conflict. This emotional heartwarming tale will move readers both young and old.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Stephen Robert Collins

    This was my Top Book of 2012 out of over 100 books . This was really fab book it is wonderful book about WWI that is not run of mill WWI book. The only puzzling thing for me was how the horse could understand more than one language

  29. 4 out of 5

    James

    Morpurgo at his best - not to be missed! (And so much better than the Hollywood film).

  30. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    A story of war told through the perspective of Joey - a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, brought up on a farm then sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front in 1914. Fundamentally, this is what this book describes: the horrors and hardships of war. And because they are seen from the perspective of an animal, they are told in a simple straightforward way that will go straight to the heart of any reader. 'In an hour, maybe, or two', he A story of war told through the perspective of Joey - a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, brought up on a farm then sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front in 1914. Fundamentally, this is what this book describes: the horrors and hardships of war. And because they are seen from the perspective of an animal, they are told in a simple straightforward way that will go straight to the heart of any reader. 'In an hour, maybe, or two', he said. 'We will be trying our best again each other to kill. God only knows why we do it, and I think He has maybe forgotten why.' The hardships Joey goes through, as well as the kindness and generosity of not one but several people during those harsh times, literally made me want to cry. From the time I saw and loved the movie adaptation (quite a few years ago), I've been wanting to read the book. And now that I have, I must say - I loved the book even more than the movie!! If you love horses, you have got to read this!!

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