Project Description


Willow King

by Chris Platt

A caring young girl’s determination and affection turns a foal born with crooked legs into a rising competitor.

When prizewinning Thoroughbred Grey Dancer’s foal is born with its legs too crooked to race, Mr. Ellis, the owner of Willow Run Farm, orders him to be destroyed. But thirteen-year-old Katie Durham, who works in the stalls and has a disability of her own, can’t bear to let this happen. So she comes up with a plan to save him.

Trading her prize horse Jester in exchange for the colt, Katie takes the newborn Willow King to a remote pasture and begins training him in secret. With the help of Jason Roberts, the boy next door, Katie and Willow King begin a journey through injuries and numerous obstacles to the gates of the Portland Downs Futurity race. With so much at stake, can King and Katie win the race and earn a spot in the prestigious Kentucky Derby?

Chris Platt, a former jockey, has written a riveting and fast-paced story inspired by the experiences of a real championship race horse. Featuring plenty of horse-filled action scenes and information about horse training and behavior, Willow King is sure to delight equine enthusiasts.

Format: Paperback
Price: $6.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-549-2
Publication Date: 9/1/2010
Page Count: 192
Size: 6 ̎ x 8-1/2 ̎
Age Range: 8 – 12
Language: English
AR Level: 5.0
GRL: R, Gr 4
Lexile: 760L
Themes: Hard Work, Horse Care and Training, Patience, Sacrifice
BISAC 1: JUV002130 JUVENILE FICTION / Animals / Horses
BISAC 2: JUV032090 JUVENILE FICTION / Sports & Recreation / Equestrian
BISAC 3: JUV039220 JUVENILE FICTION / Social Issues / Values & Virtues


“A lively girl-and-horse story set in Oregon that is full of fascinating detail about how these animals are trained to be champions…. Horse-crazy readers will find themselves immersed in the racing world, and will root for Willow King and Katie all the way.” ―Kirkus Reviews

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.