What a year for horse books!

I’m so excited, I have to blog about it.

Today two of my favorite authors announced they have new books coming out this fall. And another favorite of mine just dropped the latest in a fast-paced serial which has “next weekend’s read” all over it. While there are always awesome new books to read, I’m really excited that these titles are all equestrian fiction.

How did that happen, anyway? Five years ago equestrian fiction as we know it did not exist. There were plenty of thrillers with horses in them, and lots of younger reader-to-young adult titles. But what we have now goes deeper than “a story with horses in it.” We have amazing and talented equestrians writing for equestrians – of all ages – with a modern contemporary voice and realistic, relatable plots.

I’m so excited. Did I say that already?

Anyway, now is the time to catch up with these authors before their new books come out. Here’s what we are looking at:

Mara Dabrishus is releasing the sequel to her gorgeous Saratoga story, Stay the DistanceIn case you were wondering what a perfect book cover looks like, it’s this one:

From MaraDabrishus.com
From MaraDabrishus.com

Wouldn’t this look great on merch? I’m thinking tote bag. Tote bag, Mara! Let’s make this happen!

The next one I’m psyched for? Mary Pagones’ Quick Bright Things Come to Confusion, a sequel to Fortune’s Fool.

Pagones Tweet
From Mary Pagones’ Twitter today!

I’m not surprised this cover is totally unique — so are Mary Pagones’ completely original approaches to equestrian fiction. I am so excited to get back into Simon’s head. I wonder if he still listens to The Killers all the time. I have so much respect for his musical taste.

(And this title is amazing.)

If you haven’t read Fortune’s Fool or The Horse is Never Wrong, I have a review of these books here.

So all of this to get excited for, and I’m still pumped for this weekend when I’m going to spend some quality time catching up with Loxwood, the delightful eventing series from British author Grace Wilkinson. I haven’t reviewed Loxwood or A Perfect Stridethe first two books in the series, because I’m behind on everything… but I can assure you they’re fantastic. Her new book, Between the Flags, picks up on a cliffhanger from A Perfect Stride. Let’s do this, weekend!

The latest from Grace Wilkinson promises more eventing delights.
The latest from Grace Wilkinson promises more eventing delights.

I know this isn’t even close to all the new horse books for the second half of 2016, but all of these coming at me at once have me kind of giddy! So if you’ll excuse me, I have a lot of reading to catch up on…!

Get Free Horse Books from Amazon Prime

If you’re looking for a way to get free horse books (and I know you are, because I see my books turn up in Google searches like “Natalie Keller Reinert Free Download” ALL THE FREAKING TIME) I know a better way for you than going to some questionable site and downloading a PDF that may or may not destroy your computer’s insides.

You can get free horse books directly from Amazon, and you can do it one of two ways:

  1. Amazon Prime, which has lots of other benefits, or
  2. Kindle Unlimited, which is just for free books (I see no downside here)

All of my books are in the Kindle Select program. That means that Amazon Prime and Kindle Unlimited subscribers are eligible to download those books for free.

And unlike when you download them from ScaryFreeBooks.hackmycomputerplease.bz, no one’s computer gets eaten and the author gets paid. That’s right, we get paid. It helps us keep the lights on and make up for the fact that we have no social lives and no hobbies because all we can do is write books as fast as our fingers can type.

So you can see there’s a very nice benefit to this if you enjoy horse books, or any kind of books. The more you read, the more pennies flow into our meager accounts, and thus the more we can write. And you’re just paying a subscription fee for this access.

So not to sound like a shill (although I have an affiliate link because pennies, meager account, keeping lights on, candles are dangerous, etc.) but Amazon Prime and Kindle Unlimited have so far been very helpful to me as an author. The borrows help me afford to spend more time on writing novels and less time on freelancing. In fact, I only freelance for a select few companies now, and I spend most of my writing time on Alex and Alexander and Jules and Pete and all their horses.

Here’s how you can tell a book is a free download for members:

Kindle Unlimited titles are marked above their covers - easy!
Kindle Unlimited titles are marked above their covers – easy!

Very easy: it says right above the title. You can still also preview the first section of the book with the “look inside” feature, so there’s no reason to download a book you’re not already hooked on.

(By the way, maybe if we keep asking nicely, Amazon will give us an Equestrian Fiction category so our books don’t have to be in the Horse Care section. Maybe.)

As you can see, just on this one page there’s more than my books available on Kindle Unlimited, there’s also fellow Horseback Reads author Kim Ablon Whitney, who is getting rave reviews, by the way, for her Show Circuit series.

Kindle Unlimited offers free downloads for $9.99 a month, with the first month free.

Amazon Prime offers one free download per month in addition to things like free two-day shipping, unlimited streaming with Prime Video, unlimited photo storage, ad-free music, etc. You can get a thirty-day free trial of Amazon Prime here.

Oh, and one more thing: if you like having the physical copy of a book as well, there’s a program I’m also enrolled in called Kindle Matchbook. When you purchase one of my paperbacks from Amazon only, you automatically get a free download of the Kindle edition. It’s like when you buy a record and get the MP3 download code included inside. It’s the least I can do for my readers.

Are you using Kindle Unlimited? Is the program working for you? Keep reading!

Autographed Books: Turning For Home

I’m often getting requests for autographed copies of books, but since I rarely keep any stock at home, it’s usually something reserved for book-signing events. Well, I don’t have anything planned before this November’s Equine Affaire, but I do have books in stock!

The paperback of Turning For Home - complete with book award sticker!
The paperback of Turning For Home – complete with book award sticker!

If you’d like a signed copy of my award-finalist novel Turning For Home, now is the perfect opportunity. I have a limited number of paperbacks in stock. Just email me at natalie at nataliekreinert.com to order yours!

The cover price is $14.95, plus $5.00 for shipping anywhere in the United States, payable via PayPal. Shipment outside of the U.S. available upon request.

You’ll get a nice message and the book signed to you (or whoever you like)!

I’m happy to offer this service since so many readers have asked. Are you looking for another of my books with an autograph? Let me know!

Pictures from Pimlico

A few quick pics from the road, as we are in Baltimore for the Preakness Stakes! 

  
We had an amazing spot on the inside rail, thanks to a table in the Turfside Terrace. It made for intimate looks at the turf races.

  Black-eyed Susans – orange juice with vodka and Maker’s Mark? Something like that. These were served from a pre-made jug but they were still delicious so that says something about a successful recipe! The awesome glasses were only $10 with the drink – that’s a very economical price for such an iconic souvenir.

  
The start of the Black-Eyed Susan  Stakes. Everything was pink. Even the starting gate.

  
I brought along Ambition for the book signing event and sold out! Turning For Home was popular too. I was so lucky to be with Eliza McGraw, author of the new racing history Here Comes Exterminator! We had so much fun meeting fans and doing a little celebrity-spotting (trainers and jockeys edition).

  Crossing the course after the racing day ended. It was such a beautiful day of thoroughbreds and sport!

Preakness Week Book Signing Event at Pimlico

Are you ready for the Preakness Stakes?

If you’re in Maryland this weekend, add Pimlico Racecourse to your plans on Friday. That’s because it’s Black-Eyed Susan Day, a celebration of all things Maryland horse-racing. There’ll be barn tours, giveaways, live racing (the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes, plus more!) and book signing events with some equestrian authors… like me!

Turning For Home coverI’ll be signing copies of my horse racing and Thoroughbred retirement novel Turning For Home, the recent finalist for the Dr. Tony Ryan Book Award. I’ll also have a few copies of my eventing novel, Ambition, on hand for anyone who wants them. You can also feel free to bring along any other titles by me you’d like signed!

I’d love to meet readers and talk horses and books with you, so please come out!

There will be several other authors there as well: Eliza McGraw will be signing Here Comes Exterminator!  and Joanne Beusch will be signing Brightly Shining: The Horse No One Wanted.

Find the horse books by the grandstand from 12 PM – 2 PM! Proceeds from our books will benefit the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance and Maryland Komen.

Preakness Day Credentials and book award stickers!
Preakness Day Credentials and book award stickers!

We’ll also be at the races on Preakness Day. This is my first time at Pimlico, and my first Preakness! After four or five Belmont Stakes, I figure it’s time to diversify my Triple Crown portfolio. No word yet on when I’ll be adding the Kentucky Derby to the mix.

Follow me on Twitter (@nataliekreinert) and Facebook — I’ll be live-tweeting from the races for as long as my phone signal and battery hold out!

Eventing: Still Living in the Balance, 8 Years Later

What makes an article consistently make the rounds on Facebook, 8 years after its publication? In this case, it’s because the insights in this article still apply today. And that’s sad, because it’s an article we read after a tragedy.

With new eventing deaths coming from around the world, Jim Wofford’s 2008 article Eventing Lives in the Balance still matters. At Retired Racehorse Blog, I’m taking a look at what we can all get from this article about the modern face of eventing.

Retired Racehorse

horse-930942_1280 Skinny fence, determined duo. Photo: Pixabay.

In 2008, veteran eventer and Olympian Jim Wofford wrote the tremendously outspoken article Eventing Lives in The Balance for Practical Horseman. Every year or so this article crops up on Facebook again, reading as fresh and relevant as it did the day it was released–or perhaps more so, because every time it rises up, it’s a rash of eventing catastrophes that awoke it from its slumber.

In the past weeks we’ve lost several horses and riders on the cross-country course. We have to be careful out there, that goes without saying. Eventing was never a cautious person’s sport, which means as riders, the temptation to go to the extreme edges of safety is always there.

Here’s the thing: the contemporary version of eventing isn’t a level playing field for horses or riders. There are hidden dangers to the way short format eventing is designed, and since…

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Never Watch Rolex if You’re on a Horse Break

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I wrote this yesterday after spending two hours watching the final horse inspections at Rolex Kentucky Three-Day-Event. It kind of coincided with my desire to bring back a horse-focused blog in Retired Racehorse Blog, the website which really jump started my writing career. If you’ve ever had to take a break from the equestrian life, you’ll get this post.

Retired Racehorse

Never watch Rolex if you’re on a horse break.

Oh, the internet makes it so easy for you. A hot weekend morning, too sticky to bother going out for a walk, too sunny to bother making any plans that don’t involve a slow stroll to the pool and back, why not just sit and watch horses on your television? Can’t hurt to look in on the old sport.

Never watch Rolex if you’re on a horse break.

5728949228_1bbcf58cce_z Photo: Boyd Martin, Rolex 2011. Photo: Flickr/FiveFurlongs

Kentucky isn’t just beautiful, it’s stupid-beautiful. Look at those black-board fences weaving meticulously through emerald-green hills! Look at the bright new leaves sprouting from the tops of those massive, mysterious trees! (What are those trees?) Look at the horses, horses, horses, horses everywhere! The palm trees are waving outside your window, the blue sky is sparkling and suggesting you slip on your swimsuit and take a…

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