Monday, May 28, 2018

"Selah’s Painted Dream" by Susan Count

EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
Selah’s Painted Dream
(Dream Horse Adventures Book 3)
by Susan Count

Selah’s Painted Dream (Dream Horse Adventures Book 3) by Susan Count

Selah’s Painted Dream is the third book in the Dream Horse Adventures series by Susan Count. Also available: Mary's Song (read my blog post) and Selah's Sweet Dream (read my blog post).

Mary's Song by Susan CountSelah's Sweet Dream by Susan Count


Selah’s Painted Dream is currently on tour with BeachBoundBooks. The tour stops here today for an excerpt and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


Description
Thirteen-year-old Selah’s life is about as perfect as it gets. She has horsy friends at school, and on weekends, she rides her black mare on Grandpa’s farm. Training the horse to do upper-level liberty work is what makes her heart beat.
But one word can ruin a perfect life - moving.
A move would separate her from her horse, so she plots to get her name on the farm mailbox instead. She’s sure she could persuade Grandpa - except he’s overly distracted by a sheep-loving neighbor.
Determined not to let Grandpa's new sweetheart take her place in his heart, Selah puts her hope in a painted dream horse from Grandpa’s past. When she snugs up the girth and buckles on her spurs, Selah rides to win.


Excerpt
Chapter 2
The morning sun was barely awake when Selah rode Dream into The Canaan Grasslands. There had to be something she could do to make Grandpa see her moving to the farm was a terrific idea. If he warmed up to her idea, then her parents would, too. “If it weren’t for Katie, he would have suggested it himself. But Katie’s not going to stop me.”
Sweet Dream’s head flew up, and she spun sharply. Ears pricked forward, the mare snorted in alarm, shaking Selah in the saddle. Selah gripped both reins and made tight contact with the bit trying to steady the horse. She stared down the service road. It dawned on her something was brushing along the crowns of the trees and coming fast in their direction. A red-and-white plane lurched and wobbled toward them as it snapped the tops off the small pines. Dream made the decision to save them both when she bolted and plunged into the forest. She lunged through the thick brush, making a beeline toward the farm. Selah crouched low and hung on as if her life depended on it. She yowled as her knee impacted a tree.
Behind them, trees cracked and splintered. Then came a thud and the screeching crunch of metal. Quiet returned to the forest. Dream skidded to a stop at the top of a deep ravine and trembled. Selah braced in the stirrups, so she didn’t fly over the mare’s head. Even through the western saddle, she could feel Dream’s heart pounding. The mare’s sides heaved with exertion. Selah kicked her feet free of the stirrups and vaulted to the ground. She winced as she landed and her knee buckled. Rubbing her painful knee, she clutched one rein. Dream pranced around her, flipping her nose and blowing hard.
“Easy, girl. Easy.” Selah turned with the horse, speaking soothing words, but staying clear of her clomping hooves. She needed to calm the horse, and talking sweetly wasn’t working. Her feet tangled in the brush. She fell beside Dream, jerking on the bit, for which she would apologize later. She narrowly missed getting her hand stomped on. Leaping to her feet, she had to take control before Dream became completely unmanageable. She asked Dream to execute her groundwork exercises. She yielded the mare’s hindquarters, asked her to go forward then backward. Now sidestep away and circle around. As soon as the mare’s head lowered, Selah positioned the horse by a log and climbed into the saddle.
They retraced their steps toward the service road. “How did you not break a leg galloping through here?” She grimaced at the number of deep holes they had passed in their mad crash through the woods. Dream picked her way through the fallen branches of a dead tree in the last fifteen feet to the road.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“Now, into the third book of the Dream Horse Adventures series, author Susan Count does not disappoint. Her realism and heart continue to engage us, and carry us through to the end with full attention. The book breathes with life, whether in the connect with heart and dreams, with past and present, or the confusion that stirs and overflows the pot from time to time. Count captures the struggle of human emergence as gracefully as a butterfly comes to its first flight. Teen transition carries such a force capable to scatter, connect, and realign even stronger. Selah struggles through her transition, and learns the joy and importance of relationships, both human and equine.” ~ Darleen Wohlfeil, Story Monsters Ink Magazine
“This story is full of the sorts of conflicts that real youngsters face every day, so it is very easy to relate to Selah's feelings. She is a bright, resourceful character who instantly appeals to the reader. I also liked the expressions of Christian faith and values in this book. This is a delightful story, and I would heartily recommend it to all horse-lovers of any age. I want to read Ms. Count's other books now!” ~ Barbara Jean Owens
“It gives realistic views of the problems a young teen can face along with good advice from the adults. Add the love of a young girl for her horse and it is a great addition to a child’s library.” ~ AnnnsiePansey
“I loved the story and the characters. I did not want to put it down once I started reading it. This is book #3 in a series. I enjoyed it so much that I have purchased the first two to read as well. I would definitely recommend this book.” ~ Kathy Mccarthy
“Another delightful story from Susan Count with Dream Horse Adventures Book 3. Selah's Painted Dream is action packed, full of horsey adventures, teenage trauma and beautiful heartwarming relationships that bring tears to your eyes.” ~ aggiesm


About the Author
Susan Count
As a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, American Christian Fiction Writers, and Texas Association of Authors, I take studying the craft of writing seriously. Revision is my super-power.
Instilled with the need to create, I love building projects and writing adventure stories. I’m a life-long equestrian and owned by a Rocky Mountain Horse. I adore grandchildren, horses, bunnies, mochas, and forest trails.
I’ve published three books in an equestrian series. I write at an antique secretary desk that occupies a glass room with a forest view. Fittingly, it once belonged to the same wise grandmother who introduced me to the love of reading via Walter Farley's horse books. That desk has secret compartments which hold memories, mysteries, and story ideas.

Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.

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