Black Beauty (Sterling Unabridged Classics Series)

Black Beauty (Sterling Unabridged Classics Series)

by Anna Sewell, Scott McKowen

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The illustrations for this series were created by Scott McKowen, who, with his wife Christina Poddubiuk, operates Punch & Judy Inc., a company specializing in design and illustration for theater and performing arts. Their projects often involve research into the visual aspects of historical settings and characters. Christina is a theater set and costume designer and contributed advice on the period clothing for the illustrations.

Scott created these drawings in scratchboard ­ an engraving medium which evokes the look of popular art from the period of these stories. Scratchboard is an illustration board with a specifically prepared surface of hard white chalk. A thin layer of black ink is rolled over the surface, and lines are drawn by hand with a sharp knife by scraping through the ink layer to expose the white surface underneath. The finished drawings are then scanned and the color is added digitally.

Every child loves a story about a horse, and Black Beauty remains one of the finest, most touching ever written. Set in Victorian London, the novel follows the shifting fortunes of a horse as he moves from owner to owner. Narrated by the noble Black Beauty himself, the tale offers an animal’s perspective of the world, and highlights the thoughtless, even cruel treatment animals endured during that period.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781402792670
Publisher: Sterling
Publication date: 05/03/2011
Series: Sterling Unabridged Classics Series
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 208
File size: 1 MB
Age Range: 10 - 14 Years

About the Author

Anna Sewell (1820-78) was born in Norfolk, England. Disabled through illness, she grew to rely on a horse and carriage for mobility. Black Beauty was inspired by her experiences, and remains one of the world's favorite animal stories.

Read an Excerpt

My Early Home

The first place that I can well remember was a large pleasant meadow with a pond of clear water in it. Some shady trees leaned over it, and rushes and water lilies grew at the deep end. Over the hedge on one side we looked into a plowed field, and on the other we looked over a gate at our master's house, which stood by the roadside. At the top of the meadow was a plantation of fir trees, and at the bottom a running brook overhung by a steep bank.

While I was young I lived upon my mother's milk, as I could not eat grass. In the daytime I ran by her side, and at night I lay down close by her. When it was hot we used to stand by the pond in the shade of the trees, and when it was cold we had a nice warm shed near the plantation.

As soon as I was old enough to eat grass, my mother used to go out to work in the daytime and come back in the evening.

There were six young colts in the meadow besides me. They were older than I was; some were nearly as large as grown-up horses. I used to run with them, and had great fun; we used to gallop all together round and round the field, as hard as we could go. Sometimes we had rather rough play, for they would frequently bite and kick as well as gallop.

One day, when there was a good deal of kicking, my mother whinnied to me to come to her, and then she said:

"I wish you to pay attention to what I am going to say to you. The colts who live here are very good colts, but they are carthorse colts and, of course, they have not learned manners. You have been well bred and well born; your father has a great name in these parts, and your grandfather won the cup two years at the Newmarket races. Your grandmother had the sweetest temper ofany horse I ever knew, and I think you have never seen me kick or bite. I hope you will grow up gentle and good, and never learn bad ways; do your work with a good will, lift your feet up well when you trot, and never bite or kick even in play."

I have never forgotten my mother's advice. I knew she was a wise old horse, and our master thought a great deal of her. Her name was Duchess, but he often called her Pet.

Our master was a good, kind man. He gave us good food, good lodging, and kind words; he spoke as kindly to us as he did to his little children. We were all fond of him, and my mother loved him very much. When she saw him at the gate, she would neigh with joy, and trot up to him. He would pat and stroke her and say, "Well, old Pet, and how is your little Darkie?" I was a dull black, so he called me Darkie, then he would give me a piece of bread, which was very good, and sometimes he brought a carrot for my mother. All the horses would come to him, but I think we were his favorites. My mother always took him to the town on a market day in a light gig.

There was a plowboy, Dick, who sometimes came into our field to pluck blackberries from the hedge. When he had eaten all he wanted, he would have what he called fun with the colts, throwing stones and sticks at them to make them gallop. We did not much mind him, for we could gallop off, but sometimes a stone would hit and hurt us.

One day he was at this game and did not know that the master was in the next field, but he was there, watching what was going on. Over the hedge he jumped in a snap, and catching Dick by the arm, he gave him such a box on the ear as made him roar with the pain and surprise. As soon as we saw the master, we trotted up nearer to see what went on.

"Bad boy!" he said. "Bad boy to chase the colts! This is not the first time, nor the second, but it shall be the last. There--take your money and go home. I shall not want you on my farm again." So we never saw Dick anymore. Old Daniel, the man who looked after the horses, was just as gentle as our master, so we were well off.


The Hunt

I was two years old when a circumstance happened which I have never forgotten. It was early in the spring; there had been a little frost in the night, and a light mist still hung over the plantations and meadows. I and the other colts were feeding at the lower part of the field when we heard, quite in the distance, what sounded like the cry of dogs. The oldest of the colts raised his head, pricked his ears, and said, "There are the hounds!" and immediately cantered off, followed by the rest of us to the upper part of the field, where we could look over the hedge and see several fields beyond. My mother and an old riding horse of our master's were also standing near, and seemed to know all about it.

"They have found a hare," said my mother, "and if they come this way we shall see the hunt."

And soon the dogs were all tearing down the field of young wheat next to ours. I never heard such a noise as they made. They did not bark, nor howl, nor whine, but kept on a "yo! yo, o, o! yo! yo, o, o!" at the top of their voices. After them came a number of men on horseback, some of them in green coats, all galloping as fast as they could. The old horse snorted and looked eagerly after them, and we young colts wanted to be galloping with them, but they were soon away into the fields lower down. Here it seemed as if they had come to a stand; the dogs left off barking and ran about every way with their noses to the ground.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Table of Contents

Part 1
1My Early Home3
2The Hunt6
3My Breaking In9
4Birtwick Park13
5A Fair Start16
8Ginger's Story Continued26
10A Talk in the Orchard33
11Plain Speaking38
12A Stormy Day41
13The Devil's Trade Mark44
14James Howard47
15The Old Ostler50
16The Fire53
17John Manly's Talk57
18Going for the Doctor61
19Only Ignorance65
20Joe Green68
21The Parting71
Part 2
23A Strike For Liberty81
24The Lady Anne84
25Reuben Smith90
26How It Ended94
27Ruined And Going Down-Hill97
28A Job-Horse And His Drivers100
30A Thief110
31A Humbug113
Part 3
32A Horse Fair119
33A London Cab Horse123
34An Old War Horse127
35Jerry Barker132
36The Sunday Cab138
37The Golden Rule143
38Dolly and a Real Gentleman147
39Seedy Sam151
40Poor Ginger155
41The Butcher158
42The Election161
43A Friend in Need163
44Old Captain and his Successor167
45Jerry's New Year171
Part 4
46Jakes and the Lady179
47Hard Times183
48Farmer Thoroughgood and his Grandson Willie187
49My Last Home191
Questions, Questions, Questions195
About the Author, About the Illustrator199

Customer Reviews

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Black Beauty (Illustrated Classics for Children) 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 42 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love Black Beauty!! The funny thing is, is that i actually have a horse that looks just like Black Beauty. When the movie came out, i compared my horse when he was two years old to Beauty when he was two years old and they looked exactly the same!!! Same white on the same foot and star on his nose. So i named my horse Black Beauty because of how great the book and movie are!!!!! sometimes i watch the movie in my stables with my horse so he can see what he looks like. Enough about me, but the book is tromendous. It actually includes conversations inbetween the horses. Even though the movie doesnt, its just as good so READ IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Btw im 12 so i bet this book is good for people my age. Posted on August 12, 2013
Guest More than 1 year ago
I like horses and the color black and Black Beauty is my favorite book and one of the best novels by Anna Sewell. He is a beautiful black animal with a white star on his forehead and one white foot and in the novel of Black Beauty, Black Beauty's white foot was usually always on the back in the left and another second best of Black Beauty's white foot was on the front in the right and that's where I like to see Black Beauty's white foot and it's perfect for the best on the front in the right, and the two hind legs on the left and the right and that's how you like Black Beauty and the best choices. My favorite character in this book is Joe Green, because at the end of Black Beauty, Joe becomes a man and one lucky day, he finds that horse he used to care for and gets excited when he said he had almost killed him so many nearly ten years ago at Squire Gordon's farm after coming back from the Doctor's. This is the best one illustrated by Scott McKowen because there is five black and white illustrations in this book of Black Beauty as a colt with his mother Duchess, Rob Roy or a differnt horse either on a hunt or Lady Anne on Black Beauty, Black Beauty getting shoes for the first time, A kind man leads Black Beauty to his new home and Black Beauty as a cab horse and if there were some other 16 illustrations of 12 black and white illustrations and 4 color illustrations in this book, that would make it the best but, there would be like some of the Full Page Illustrations are: One of the riders was getting out of the water, covered with mud the other lay quite still John rode me first slowly, then a trot, then a canter ¿The children did not know when they had enough, so I just pitched them off backwards¿ An oak fell right across the road just before us Safe in the yard, he slipped the scarf off my eyes and shouted, ¿Here, somebody! take this horse while I go back for the other¿ Going for the doctor The carter was shouting and flogging the horses unmercifully With scarcely a pause Lizzie took the leap, stumbled among the rough clouds, and fell I uttered no sound, but just stood there and listened Ginger and I neighed to each other as I was led off by Robert The farrier examined my feet one by one ¿He looked me all over¿ ¿My dear master was cheering on his comrades when one of the balls, whizzing close to my head, struck him¿ I galloped across the meadow out of sheer spirits at being free ¿Just get into this cab, and I¿ll drive you safe to the hospital,¿ said Jerry My groom began patting me as if he were quite overjoyed at seeing me again That was talking about some of the black and white illustrations by Edwin John Prittie, the four color illustrations by Edward F. Cortese and two of the color illustrations of Going for the doctor and 'He looked me all over' by Percy F. Spence and that would make it just for the perfect book illustrated by Scott McKowen if you imagined it in your head to make it go with the book. My best favorite books of Black Beauty are Illustrated by Neil Reed: published by Prospero books in 2001, Illustrated by Scott McKowen, Illustrated by Ian Andrew, Adapted by June Brigman & Roy Richardson, Adapted by Lisa Church and Illustrated by Lucy Corvino, Illustrated in black and white by Edwin John Prittie and four color illustrations by Edward F. Cortese, Illustrated by Fritz Eichenberg: Illustrated Junior Library copyright in 1995, Adapted by Laura F. Marsh, Illustrated by William Geldart and Illustrated by G. P. Micklewright and that's my best ten favorite books of Black Beauty to read and look at in Baddeck to read over the summer and that's how you love the best ten books of Black Beauty, as if you could live in all of them. But the best ones to be in are Illustrated by Neil Reed: published by Prospero books in 2001, Illustrated by Scott McKowen, Illustrated by Ian Andrew, Adapted by June Brigman & Roy Richardson, Adapted by Lisa Church and Illustrated by Lucy Corvino, Illustrate
nyanyanhoi on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
There is a horse that black and really beautiful. His name is Black Beauty.This story is written like a horse is talking to us.He was heard by his mother, ¿he should always be a good horse, and human will like you¿.Presently, he left from his mother, he work hard for people who need him.Although he can¿t say anything because of he is a horse, he work for human like pulls carriage. He has to do if he doesn¿t like to do but he still works hard. I was greatly touched by his effort. I could read this book like I am horse. I think this book is really nice.
bpinchot40 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A good book told from a Horse point of view. You should read this!
ctpress on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Audiobook - wery well read - interesting to listen to Black Beautys reflections as he is sold to different owners that treat him sometimes good, sometimes very horrible. There's some really good moral lessons on how to connect to horses. And a humorous defense on resting on the Lords Day - Sunday :)
BookBrook on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It was OK . I found it really hard to understand sometimes. I finally gave up and watched the movie. It's a sweet story but it has too many details.
LisaBohman on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Black Beauty, a horse, tells about his life beginning as a young colt in the English countryside. Each chapter teaches a moral lesson on topics such as kindness, sympathy, and understanding, all related to the treatment of horses. Black Beauty describes his hard life pulling cabs in London as well as the end of his life and retiring in the country. Although this is a children's novel, the book inspired other works about the cruel treatment of horses and other animals. This is a sad, yet sweet story about the hard life of a horse. I would recommend it to others. It is a true classic and will continue to be loved by generations to come, making us aware that animals have thoughts and feelings too. Children who love animals, especially horses should read this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book I have read has been my favourite book since I was nine years of age
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best classics i have ever read in my entire life the best thing evet
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Go to res 8
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love his book though.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book,it taught me alot about animal rights. It was very moving.
peace_love_books_333 More than 1 year ago
This well-written book really makes you see the pain and joy animals might see! I haven't read it in a while, so I can't give the most detailed review, but the experience of reading Black Beauty has totally stayed with me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Krazeehors More than 1 year ago
I first read this book when I was just a little girl, in a very old volume with a cloth binding, small print and no illustrations. I could not put it down. Later, when my son was little, I had an illustrated book that I read to him every night. Now, in my mid-50's, I still find time to read this book at least once a year. That old picture book has now been passed on to my grandchildren and I love reading it to them. I first learned about how horses can be abused, how to take care of them, and most of all how important they were to become in my life!! I highly recommend this book to readers of all ages. The lessons it imparts are timeless and important. You will learn a lot about who you are as well.
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