Review Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed By Maria Beltran for Readers’ Favorite
The Gift by Rebecca Hubbard is a charming children’s book in which eleven-year-old Pip yearns for a horse. She was extremely delighted when her father presented her with one on her birthday. Things are not going the way she likes though, because her horse moves away whenever she approaches. The first few days are very frustrating for Pip because she thinks that Buck, the name she gives her horse, seems uninterested in being friends with her. Guided by her father, she sets out to gain Buck’s friendship, day by day. Young Buck, on the other hand, is separated for the first time from the other horses and it feels different to be in another environment. Lonely and scared, he also longs for a friend, but finds Pip to be a strange creature. Will the two eventually become friends?
Rebecca Hubbard’s The Gift is a children’s book that educates and entertains. It also teaches its readers a thing or two about making friends. Little girl Pip dreams of having a horse as a best friend and is elated when she gets Buck. Thinking that they will become the best of friends immediately, she finds out that she has to gain Buck’s trust before anything else, and this takes time and determination. Beautifully illustrated by Krickett King, the story is first told from Pip’s point of view and then switching to Buck’s, giving readers a glimpse of what is going on in both their minds as they interact. Perfectly written for 4th to 6th graders, The Gift also shows that friendship entails sensitivity and patience, and these are precious lessons that many adults can also learn from.
Review rating 5 stars
Reviewed By Jane Finch for Readers’ Favorite
The Gift, written by Rebecca J. Hubbard and illustrated by Krickett King, is the story of a young girl named Pip and a colt named Buck. The young horse goes to live with Pip, but is very frightened of his new surroundings and being taken away from the herd. Pip doesn’t understand this at first and thinks the colt doesn’t like her. Gradually both the horse and girl start to understand each other. Pip learns how to gain the colt’s trust, and Buck realises that the girl does not plan to hurt him. Although he is missing his horse friends, Buck finally understands that Pip can also be a friend.
This is a lovely story for young readers, and delightful in its simplicity. Rebecca J. Hubbard has done a very good job of explaining about friendship, and how one has to work at it and not expect it to happen without a bit of effort on both parts. But this is also a story about loneliness. Starting with Pip’s version, the story then examines the events from the horse’s perspective. This story is about understanding, companionship, patience, and love. Although the story can be likened to human relationships, it’s also about understanding animals and how to gain their trust and love. It’s a good life lesson that friendship and trust have to be earned. Giving the story from both the human aspect and the animal aspect is especially endearing. Apart from the life lessons to be learned, young horse lovers will empathise with this tale. Very nicely done.