Half Broke Horses is sort of a prequel to one of my very favorite books, The Glass Castle. The stories from Jeannette Walls’ grandmother’s life are enjoyable and hair-raising at the same time.
Lily Casey Smith was born in 1901. In the book, she tells her adventures in her own voice. She was a mustang breaker, schoolteacher, ranch wife, bootlegger, poker player, racehorse rider, bush pilot and mother of two.
In an author’s note, Walls writes that she considers Half Broke Horses less a novel than an oral history, a retelling of stories handed down by my family through the years.
Since I love to hear the story of a family, to put the pieces together from the generations, this book was perfect for me to read in the very few precious minutes I had for reading last year. I squeezed it in sometime in the winter, but really it’s a great summer read.
Part of why I blog is to record some of our family stories for my kids, before I forget them. I would love to write the stories of my grandparents and parents down like this one day.