Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Old Bones the Wonder Horse by Mildred Mastin…

Old Bones the Wonder Horse (original 1955; edition 1983)

by Mildred Mastin Pace, Illustrated by Wesley Dennis (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2041157,485 (4.09)13
Title:Old Bones the Wonder Horse
Authors:Mildred Mastin Pace
Other authors:Illustrated by Wesley Dennis (Illustrator)
Info:Scholastic (1983), Paperback
Collections:Your library

Work details

Old Bones the Wonder Horse by Mildred Mastin Pace (1955)

  1. 20
    Man O'War by Walter Farley (stacyinthecity)
    stacyinthecity: Man O War raced at the same time, though never against, Exterminator (Old Bones).
  2. 10
    Crazy Good: The True Story of Dan Patch, the Most Famous Horse in America by Charles Leerhsen (SunnySD)

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 13 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
Fun kids book, about a horse I'd never heard of before. Exterminator/Old Bones is presented as a magical being - he understands the race better than his jockeys do, he's not bothered by any of the things that bother horses (traveling, people running up to him), etc. Oh, and he recognizes everyone he's ever interacted with - and every interaction was a happy one. No mention of his previous owner after he starts winning, either. It's a very simplified story, but a good one; I enjoyed reading it and will probably reread. I'll keep an eye out for more books by this author, too. ( )
  jjmcgaffey | Sep 30, 2016 |
If my library had owned this when I was looking for more like all the ones I loved by?á ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
What ages would I recommend it too? Six and up.

Length? An evening to read.

Characters? Memorable, several characters.

Setting? Real World, 1915 - 1945.

Written approximately? 1955.

Does the story leave questions in the readers mind? Ready to read more.

Any issues the author (or a more recent publisher) should cover? No.

Short storyline: A young colt goes from an exercise colt to the racer he wants to be.

Notes for the reader: Reasonably well written. Leaves out a few parts the reader might want to know. ( )
  AprilBrown | Feb 25, 2015 |
This is a reread of a book I read as a child. It is a short book, written in a similar style to many Marguerite Henry stories such as "Misty of Chincoteague", but is suitable for adults who are interested in a mini-biography of the great race horse Exterminator, aka "Old Bones". The drawings by Wesley Dennis are wonderful, as are all that illustrator's works. ( )
  fuzzi | Jan 2, 2015 |
This is an old favorite that I loved when I was 8 or so. My battered old paperback edition & another both gave up the ghost when my kids read them, so I've been without for years. Can't recall the last time I read it myself or to/with one of the kids. Then I won an Ebay auction & the seller couldn't find the book she sold me, so let me choose another from her offerings. I found this, an old hard back lacking the dust cover.

It was a very quick & easy read with quite a few excellent charcoal sketches by [a:Wesley Dennis|441088|Wesley Dennis|https://www.goodreads.com/assets/nophoto/user/m_50x66-e89fc14c32a41c0eb4298dfafe929b65.png]. (He is best known for his sketches in [a:Marguerite Henry|10652|Marguerite Henry|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/authors/1200683797p2/10652.jpg]'s books such as [b:King of the Wind: The Story of the Godolphin Arabian|423156|King of the Wind The Story of the Godolphin Arabian|Marguerite Henry|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1329982839s/423156.jpg|2236675].)

Pace tells the tale of Exterminator (aka 'Old Bones') one of the best race horses of the early 1900's. He won the 1918 Kentucky Derby which is only for 3 year olds at 30-1 odds since he only raced twice as a 2 year old &, unsurprisingly, didn't do well.

If you don't know anything about Thoroughbreds or racing, the impact of some of the facts surrounding this upset will probably escape you. He was born 30May1915, so was a late foal & grew to 17h. 2 year old horses, especially the big ones, often have soundness issues racing because they have a lot of growing left to do. They're like very young teens & racing is very hard on them. Also, being a late foal meant he was racing against others that were months older - a big difference at that age - since all TB's have Jan 1 as their birthday for racing purposes.

Anyway, he was a dark horse & went on to be one of the best. Unfortunately, he was a gelding, so kept racing until he broke down at the age of 9, in his 100th race. He won over $250,000 over his career. For more details & spoilers, Wikipedia has a short article on him here:

Pace does anthropomorphize & cutsey up the story a bit, but she pretty much has all the facts right, at least the Wikipedia page & the book are fairly close. It was a great read, although I'm not much for the cutsey treatment.

He was a great horse that is still remembered fondly by those who love horse racing. In May of this year (2013) Eliza McGraw did a piece on him for the New York Times Horse Racing Blog & this book is one of her fond memories of him.

He even has a Facebook fan page.

I guess that says it all. If you get a chance, take an hour or so & read this book. You won't regret it. If you need an excuse, buy it for a kid since it's perfect bed time reading material.

Warning: May cause horse craziness, a very expensive habit.

Additional note: I gave 'Old Bones' to my boss to read. He's very into horse racing & also liked the book. He said the differences in racing really made an impression. He's about the last person anyone would think of to like a kids book, too. I could tell he didn't really want to read it, but he said once he started, he blew right through it & didn't want to put it down. I doubt any book has received higher praise than that. ( )
  jimmaclachlan | Aug 18, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
First words
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English


Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

No library descriptions found.

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
1 avail.
3 wanted

Popular covers


Average: (4.09)
3 5
3.5 2
4 13
4.5 1
5 8

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 116,186,517 books! | Top bar: Always visible