Mustang Flats

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by G. Clifton Wisler

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Library of Congress Descriptor: When his father returns from the war in 1865, 14-year-old Alby finds his beloved Pa a changed man and can only hope that they will be friends again.

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Type of Book: Chapter/Fiction

Genres:

Topics and Themes: , Fathers, Families, Civil War, Horses, Disabilities, Poverty, Responsibility, Emotional Problems

Summary

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Wisler, G. Clifton MUSTANG FLATS Lodestar (128 pp.) $14.99 August, 1997 ISBN 0-525-67544-2

When Alby’s father returns home from fighting in the Civil War, nothing is the way Alby expected. His father has lost a leg, and is bitter and haunted. Alby’s relentless efforts to keep the family and farm going during his absence are judged a failure, and Alby feels condemned and estranged. With the family on the verge of losing the farm to taxes, they come up with a scheme to capture wild horses and sell them to the army. For Alby it is one last attempt to bring him and his father back together again.

As with other Wisler historicals, he gives a flavor for the times and hardships faced by ordinary people dealing with extraordinary situations in America’s past. If his characterizations are a little flat, his action isn’t, and the sections dealing with capturing and breaking the horses are particularly compelling. He also conveys the strength and determination it took to survive, as well as a hint of the horror and psychological toll of this most brutal of wars. (Historical Fiction. 10-14)

-- Matt Berman, The New Orleans Times-Picayune and Children's Book Award Annual’‘

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