IN THE WINTER OF 1917, nineteen-year-old Martha Lessen saddles her horses and heads for a remote county in eastern Oregon looking for work "gentling" wild horses. Many of the regular hands are off fighting the war, and though the ranchers are skeptical of Martha's quiet, unconventional methods, it is clear that she has a serious knowledge of horses. Over the long, hard winter, the townsfolk witness Martha talking in low, sweet tones to horses believed beyond repair -- and getting miraculous, almost immediate results. Ultimately, her gifts will earn her the respect of the men, the friendship of the women, and an indispensable place in the community.
In The Hearts of Horses, Molly Gloss transports readers to a bygone era of the American West in a heartwarming and remarkable story that illuminates how people and animals touch each other's lives in the most unexpected and profound ways.