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Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite
Rusty Under the Western Skies: A Rusty the Horse Ranch Tale by Mary Fichtner begins with Rusty grazing quietly as the blue sky is turning gray. Rusty could sense the storm and the scent of the storm gave him a tickle. He could smell the fragrance in the soft wind and Rusty got pleasure in those smells. The crazy colors of the clouds began to unfold and they resembled a painting. Rain was hammering down and it soaked Rusty’s shiny brown coat. When the rain stopped and the sky was clear, Rusty saw a beautiful rainbow which touched each side of the valley.
The story is enchanting and magical, written in rhyming verses that add to the poetic and lyrical quality of the story. The watercolor sketches are fabulous and they make the story lively and colorful. The subtle messages woven through the story are palpable while one is reading the book. Rusty shows everyone how to live in the moment and dance through the storms in life. Rusty will help readers look at life with a different perspective, and the book also throws light on the way of living in the West. The story will encourage children in many ways; paint, try their hand at writing rhyming verses, and most importantly how to look at life with a positive outlook. Hence this story should be read out in classrooms and school libraries, and parents of small children can keep it in their personal collections because of its motivational content.