Project Description


Star Gazer

by Chris Platt

A spirited young girl’s determination and affection turns a lame horse into a rising competitor in bestselling author Chris Platt’s latest book for horse lovers

Jordan Mckenzie has just moved from the big city to rural Michigan, where she loves to watch the strong, tall Belgian draft horses at work on the nearby Amish and Mennonite farms.

When Jordan and her new friend attend the local auction, she sees one of these beautiful drafts – a prize pulling horse – about to be sold to the packers. Without her mom’s permission, she spends all her money to save the lame mare. She brings Star Gazer home, determined to restore her to health and help her become the champion she once was.

But Jordan knows very little about draft horses and even less about log pulling. She’s in trouble with her mom, and the local kids are making fun of her decision. With the help of Jacob, a Mennonite boy who shares her love of draft horses, Jordan slowly learns to drive a team. With the state fair just around the corner, will Jordan be ready to compete? And will winning prove that she and Star Gazer really do belong?

Hardcover: $14.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-596-6
Total Pages: 144
Size: 6 x 8 1/2
Language: English
Accelerated Reader
AR Quiz#: 145946
AR Reading Level: 5
AR Points: 8

F&P (Fountas & Pinnell)
F&P Level: T
F&P Grade: 5

Reading Counts
Reading Counts Level: 4.6
Reading Counts Points: 14
Reading Counts Interest Level: 3-5


“…Draft horses are underrepresented in literature, and Jordan’s ignorance offers plenty of scope for educating readers too. The Mennonite characters who help Jordan are interesting…the story moves at a steady clip…” ―Kirkus Reviews

“A lovely story about a young girl and the enormous (literally and figuratively) responsibility she take on in the form of a lam Percheron mare.” ―Night Owl Reviews


Parents’ Choice Approved Award ―Parents’ Choice Foundation 2011

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (middle school / junior high) ―Kansas National Education Association 2012

Meet the Author

Chris Platt, one of the first female jockeys in Oregon, is the author of more than a dozen books for young readers, including the popular horse novels Willow King, its sequel Race the Wind, and many titles in the Thoroughbred series. She lives in Nevada.