Things That Always Fascinated Me About The Saddle Club Books




Crazy Lady Mrs Reg

This old lady seemed to live out her days waiting for students to wander into the tack room. She was especially attracted to those wrestling with their conscience, going through an emotional time or struggling to make a decision. Rather than just getting to the point or giving advice she always had a long drawn out vague fable that was someone how meant to point them in the right direction. Get to the frickin point Mrs R.

How Lisa was so terrible at riding

Like seriously Bonnie Bryant wrote a lot of these books so you would think at some point Lisa would improve a lot but it probably didn’t help the poor girl that in the intro to every book she was basically described as the worst rider of the bunch. My favourite had to be the book where Lisa goes beach riding on holidays and basically falls on her ass every time she goes out. Bless her optimism she somehow still came out of that feeling like she had learned something. At that stage I am usually half way through a bottle of wine and vowing to take up a new hobby that involves inanimate equipment.


Why the hell Lisa turned down a horse

When I was her age I’d have sold my soul, my She-ra doll and my siblings for a horse. In one of the earlier books Lisa parents decide to buy her a horse and after trying a handful of them Lisa decides she is ‘not ready for a horse’. Seriously, was she smoking something – who the hell is that sensible as a kid?? I didn’t care if I was ready or responsible enough for a horse, I spent most of my time trying to persuade my mum a pony would fit in the back garden and that the garage would make a great stable.


Getting Good Grades

So in order to ride at Pine Hollow kids had to get good grades in school. I always found this fascinating because back when I started taking riding lessons as a kid the yard owner and instructors couldn’t have cared less if I was home schooled, uneducated or the next Einstein. Max must have had serious money to be so selective about students. Not that his approach made any sense anyway – its not like all great riders excelled academically.


Tastee Delights

I lived in envy of this incredible ice cream palace where you could pretty much order any ice cream and any vast variety of toppings. It seemed heavenly in comparison to me begging the ice cream man to add a bit more strawberry sauce to my 99 cone.


Street Clothes versus yard clothes

I always wondered what the hell this was about. The yard had lockers and a changing room?! These girls turned up in normal clothes, got changed when they arrived changed again before going home? Get the f**k out! I used to cycle to the riding school in my riding gear brandishing a whip and wearing my hat and back protector….oh the shame. Worse – as an adult I still leave the yard in riding clothes and think its socially acceptable to call to a supermarket on the way home .


Hersheys Kisses

I spent most of one book wondering what on earth these things were (Lisa’s mom left some in her bag for her). Hershey’s had yet to make it to Ireland at the time so it was Cadburys all the way.


What Kinda of yard owner left this group in charge?

Throughout these books there are many incidents where Max decides to leave the horses, foals and often the entire yard at the hands of a group of young girls because he must just not know any responsible grown ups or something. You have to have good grades to ride at Pine Hollow but its totally acceptable for a group of teenagers to be left in charge….yeah seems legit. From monitoring in foal mares to deciding to euthanise an old school horse these girls were never short of responsibility.


How were these girls not killed on a trail ride

In the land of responsible adult hood the saddle club were routinely allowed to ride out unsupervised across the land. This was despite their managing to frequently fall off, get lost, get bolted with and allow a horse to get loose. Best of all was the drama in Vermont where Stevie’s crazy ass friend almost falls off a cliff or something.


Who puts a beginner on a spooky horse

On the first day Lisa rides at Pine Hollow she is on board Patch, who bolts with her because a door slams and he is such a sensitive soul he is terrified of loud noise. Yeah, nothing makes a perfect school horse for a beginner like a horse that bolts at loud noises because god knows nothing ever bangs loudly at a yard. Seriously Pine Hollow are you looking to get sued?!


How clean is the tack at Pine Hollow?

How many times can these saddles get soaped?


The celebrity lifestyle

From film star Skye Ransom to former riding champion Dorothy DeSoto  these girls seem to have a knack for rubbing shoulders with celebrities and being in the right place at the right time.


How cheap the airfares must have been to Kate’s place

At the start, pretty much every six books the girls were off to the Bar None ranch to gallivant about western style at rodeos, across the desert and to camps. The saddle club seemed to take lessons almost daily, do pony club, compete and go on overnights. These girls must seriously have put a dent in their parents pockets with their adventures.


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