Pit Pony

nov Dec 2012 674When I learned that Joyce Barkhouse’s wonderful novel, “Pit Pony,” had been made into a picture book, I knew I had to get my hands on a copy for Miss Charlotte. But then, when I discovered Janet Barkhouse (who co-authored the book with her mother, Joyce) was going to read from the book at the Biscuit Eater in Mahone Bay, I knew Miss Charlotte would be getting a signed copy for Christmas. While Miss Charlotte might be a bit young to fully appreciate the significance her very own author-signed booked, I’m sure in a few years she will really treasure it. I can’t tell you how blessed I feel to have the opportunity to meet so many talented local authors in my journey. And did I mention I’m collecting photos for a scrapbook I hope to share with Miss Charlotte one day?

I’ve got to tell you all, this book is a total delight. Janet did a wonderful job of condensing the text from the original noval to fit a picture book format, and Sydney Smith’s illustrations are simply gorgeous. Janet said her mother didn’t get to see the picture book, (she passed away last February), but she knows she would be very pleased with the finished product.

While Janet and I live in the general vicinity, and have attended several of the same events, we’d never been introduced. So I was most excited and pleased to meet her. She’s a delight. (Oh, and did I mention that Margaret Atwood is her cousin? Yup that’s right..Kind of cool I’d say.)Not only that, her mother, Joyce, received the Order of Canada back in 2009. You can read about it here if you’d like. A very talented family.

If you ever have the opportunity to hear Janet read, please, please go. Seriously, I could have listened to her all afternoon.

Janet Barkhouse

Just a thought as you search about for that perfect Christmas gift this year, why not consider the gift of a book? I’m sure many of you already have.

Leave a comment


  1. Both the cover and Janet look delightful. What a treat to be able to meet and listen to her. Is it mostly pictures or is there also significant text with the story? I’m wondering about the ages it would suit.


    • It’s a bit lengthy so far as picture books go these days, Carol. I believe Janet said it was around 2,000 words. She said she used very few of her own words, that she was able to take sentences out of the orginal book and put them together to tell the story. Miss Charlotte is too young for this book right now. A friend of mine bought it for her eight-year-old niece, and to me, that sounds about right. I hope that’s helpful.


      • Exactly what I hoped… sounds perfect for my eight-year-old granddaughter! She adores horses AND reading, even beyond her age level.


  2. Miss Charlotte will be thrilled. If she’s anything like her grandmother, she’ll have a true appreciation for books. Kudos for living where you do.


    • She’d likely be even more thrilled if the book had a pig or two in it…lol She does love piggies.. She does love books and I’m so happy for that, Joylene. 🙂


  3. What a perfect gift for Miss Charlotte! I love giving books for gifts. This one sounds very special as does the author.



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