Coal Black Horse (Paperback)

By Robert Olmstead

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 9781565126015, 229pp.

Publication Date: May 20, 2008

Fall '08/Winter '09 Reading Group List

“With its focus on choice and consequence, Coal Black Horse carries the reader across a battlefield that stretches from the Civil War to today. A young man wears a reversible coat of gray and blue -- a talisman from his mother to shield him from 'enemy' fire -- as he journeys to bring his father home, aided by the strength of the coal black horse. Olmstead's novel is both epic and personal, filled with beautiful writing about war's ugliness.”
— Charles Asher, Western AS Bookstore, Bellingham, WA
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Description

When Robey Childs's mother has a premonition about her husband, a soldier fighting in the Civil War, she does the unthinkable: she sends her only child to find his father on the battlefield and bring him home.
At fourteen, wearing the coat his mother sewed to ensure his safety--blue on one side, gray on the other-- Robey thinks he's off on a great adventure. But not far from home, his horse falters and he realizes the enormity of his task. It takes the gift of a powerful and noble coal black horse to show him how to undertake the most important journey of his life: with boldness, bravery, and self-posession.
Coal Black Horse joins the pantheon of great war novels--All Quiet on the Western Front, The Red Badge of Courage, The Naked and the Dead.
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