Horses With Special Jobs Subject of New Children’s Book Series
Enslow Publishers, a children’s school and library book publishing house, has released a new series, Horses That Help with the American Humane Association. Geared toward third and fourth graders, there are four titles in the series: Draft Horses: Horses That Work, Performing Horses: Horses That Entertain, Police Horses: Horses That Protect and Therapy Horses: Horses That Heal.
The nonfiction books were written by long-time animal book author and horse owner, Loren Spiotta-DiMare of Tewksbury Township, NJ. “When I discovered Enslow had a nice series about dogs with special jobs I offered to write similar books about horses,” the author says. “I was delighted when my proposal was accepted.”
All of the books open with a true story and close with a retirement section. Interior chapters cover history, horse breeds, training, and horses on the job. The strong emotional bond that develops between working horses and their people resonates throughout.
Many local New Jersey equestrians and their horses are featured in the series. Now retired, Lt. Robert Marelli was the director of the Newark Mounted Police Department for many years. He graces the cover of Police Horses.
Dick and Dolly, the Belgian Draft Horses featured on the cover of Draft Horses belong to the Gonglaves family of Pittstown. And the author’s Quarter Horse, Elwood and his young friend, Michelle Purri of Clinton Township appear on the cover of Therapy Horses.
When Michelle was five-years-old, she was a participant at Somerset Hills Handicapped Riders (renamed Mane Stream) in Oldwick, NJ. Now at twenty, she takes weekly riding lessons on Elwood with the author’s trainer, Tiffany Totorello of Pittstown.
“I’m very proud of Michelle,” the author says. “She is a nice little rider. She has great posture and balance and always keeps her heels down in the stirrups. Plus, I’m convinced she and Elwood have a special relationship. You can see the bond they share in the cover photo.”
Horse trainer and riding instructor, Totorello appears in both Therapy Horses, and Draft Horses with her Draft-Quarter Horse Cross, RU Calamity Jane. “Aside from taking riding lessons with Tiffany, we also do groundwork at liberty and trick training,” Spiotta-DiMare says. “So she was a great help to me when I was researching and writing the training sections of the books.”
Tony Maglio of Long Valley, NJ has trained horses for television and films. He is featured in the opening chapter of Performing Horses. Several celebrity equine performers Tommy Turvey, J.D. Winslow, and Jenny Vidbel of the Big Apple Circus are also included in the book.
To date, Spiotta-DiMare has authored 16 books and numerous magazine articles about animals. She is also the co-author of the popular picture book, Everyone Loves Elwood, the story of the 2007 World’s Ugliest Dog Winner.
Spiotta-DiMare’s most recent children’s book, Broke Leg Bear is endorsed by Jane Goodall and was named a Finalist in the 2012 USA Best Book Awards sponsored by USA Book News (children’s picture book: hardcover, nonfiction category). One of her adult titles, The Sporting Spaniel Handbook received a First Place Communications Award – Reference Book category from the Dog Writers Association of America.
“I started my publishing career in 1976,” Spiotta-DiMare says. “I’ve been incredibly lucky to be able to combine my two favorite passions: animals and writing. I enjoy it as much today as I did in the early years.” The author has also expanded her career by forming her own publishing company, J. Pace Publications and teaching Introduction to Book Publishing classes at local book stores.
Many of the photos in Horses That Help were contributed by Rozina Smith of Rozina Smith Photography in Washington, NJ. “Rozina did an excellent job of capturing the spirit of the horses and the bond they share with their people,” Spiotta-DiMare says. “I’m sure young readers will enjoy all the titles in the series,” Spiotta-DiMare says. ”They highlight diverse equine talents and demonstrate the many important jobs horses are called upon to perform. “
To order a single, hardcover book ($23.93) or the complete series ($95.72) contact Enslow Publishers at 1-800-398-2504.
Loren Spiotta-DiMare 908-832-9402 author@LorensReadingRoom.com