Tanner Stransky
April 06, 2007 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Coal Black Horse

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Robert Olmstead
publisher
Algonquin Books
genre
Fiction

We gave it a B+

In Robert Olmstead’s Coal Black Horse Robey is just 14 when his eccentric mom, prompted by a grisly premonition, dispatches him to recover his father from a Gettysburg battlefield. Naive but resourceful, Robey gallops off on an extraordinary black stallion that becomes his de facto protector (”The horse held possession of both his waking and sleeping mind”). The journey is arduous: He gets accused of spying for the South and witnesses a rape; a con artist steals his stud; and the landscape is destroyed beyond recognition. He can trust only the horse. In no-frills prose, Robert Olmstead deftly unspools Robey’s too-early loss of innocence and harrowing passage to manhood. B+

You May Like

Comments

EDIT POST