Rough Magic (Kobo eBook)

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Description


"Taking off on a horse into the Mongolian Steppe sounds like the bracing inverse to an overpopulated, busy urban life, but having the skills and grit to pull it off is another thing entirely. . . . Lara Prior–Palmer attempted the Mongol Derby not really knowing what she was getting into; she ended it knowing much more about herself, and a race champion besides." ―Estelle Tang, Elle

At the age of nineteen, Lara Prior–Palmer discovered a website devoted to “the world’s longest, toughest horse race”―an annual competition of endurance and skill that involves dozens of riders racing a series of twenty–five wild ponies across 1,000 kilometers of Mongolian grassland. On a whim, she decided to enter the race. As she boarded a plane to East Asia, she was utterly unprepared for what awaited her.

Riders often spend years preparing to compete in the Mongol Derby, a course that re–creates the horse messenger system developed by Genghis Khan. Many fail to finish. Prior–Palmer had no formal training. She was driven by her own restlessness, stubbornness, and a lifelong love of horses. She raced for ten days through extreme heat and terrifying storms, catching a few hours of sleep where she could at the homes of nomadic families. Battling bouts of illness and dehydration, exhaustion and bruising falls, she decided she had nothing to lose. Each dawn she rode out again on a fresh horse, scrambling up mountains, swimming through rivers, crossing woodlands and wetlands, arid dunes and open steppe, as American television crews chased her in their jeeps.

Told with terrific suspense and style, in a voice full of poetry and soul, Rough Magic captures the extraordinary story of one young woman who forged ahead, against all odds, to become the first female winner of this breathtaking race.

"Think the next Educated or Wild. Palmer’s memoir of beating the odds to become a horse champion is an inspiring saga of perseverance—and a classic underdog tale." —Entertainment Weekly

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Staff Picks

This book remains one of my all-time favorite books ever. This story is told in such a strikingly intimate way, you are pulled right into the time of the Trojan war, into a time of heroes and legends, and most of all, you're privy to a love story so epic and deep that it will hold your heart forever. What's more, Madeline Miller's writing is just the most pleasurable thing to read; she writes in such a way that feels as if she wrote it just for your eyes to read. You feel the wind in your hair on warm beaches, your heels kicking up sand; you feel the sticky sap of figs as you bit into their sweetness; you feel the cool spring light filtered through tall forest trees; and most of all, you see the world through the eyes and heart of young Patroclus, as he discovers the mighty hero Achilles and begins their stunning journey together, and their love story for the ages.

(Adult Fiction) - reviewed by Isabel