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Review from Readers Favorites

May 14, 2016
This author donates books to schools, libraries and other nonprofits
Author Biography

Deanie Humphrys-Dunne is a children’s book author with five books published at this time: Award-winning autobiography, Tails of Sweetbrier, Charlie the Horse, Charlene the Star, Charlene the Star and Hattie’s Heroes and Charlene the Star and Bentley Bulldog. All of her books offer positive messages for children. Her sister, Holly Humphrys-Bajaj, beautifully illustrates her books and designs the covers. All books are available on Kindle and paperback.
Tails of Sweetbrier is an inspirational award-winning autobiography about a little girl whose one desire was to become a championequestrian, in spite of her handicap. This book has won the Silver Medal in the Feathered Quill Book Contest and was a finalist for the CLIPPA Awards, and honorable mention in the Purple Dragonfly Book Awards. Tails of Sweetbrier shows children that anything is possible if you persevere. Deanie’s other books, Charlie the Horse, and Charlene the Star, Charlene the Star and Hattie’s Heroes, and Charlene the Star and Bentley Bulldog are amusing, fictional tales, which contain important life lessons. Deanie has won the “50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading Award” for her essay entered in contest. She has recently been interviewed on WTNH TV show, CT Style about her autobiography, Tails of Sweetbrier.

Book Review

Reviewed by Hilary Hawkes for Readers’ Favorite

Tails of Sweetbrier by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne is an inspirational and true YA story. Deanie has cerebral palsy and her parents are told she will never be able to walk. But her father has other ideas and, after setting up Sweetbriers riding school, he sets about teaching his young daughter (and her two sisters) how to ride and jump and become prize winning riders. Deanie loves this challenge and begins to ride even before she eventually walks at age four. A wonderful partnership between her own horse, Peach, and herself develops as does the confidence and determination that sees the two of them achieving remarkable things.

Deanie Humphrys-Dunne’s story is one that will inspire young readers to hold on to their dreams and pursue them determinedly, regardless of any apparent setbacks. Beautifully, simply and honestly told, Tails of Sweetbrier is a delightful and uplifting story. I loved the inclusion of illustrations depicting the characters at various stages of the story. I couldn’t help thinking how lucky young Deanie was to have such a positive-thinking and enterprising father – her own determination and outlook so obviously influenced by the upbringing she experienced.

Young readers will fall in love with Little Man and Fleet Nancy (or Peach) – the lovely friendship that grows between Deanie and her four legged friends is conveyed in such a delightfully contagious way. My favorite part of the book is where Deanie and Peach tackle the Oxford Farm competition – they don’t win that day, but neither do they give up in the face of adverse weather conditions! With plenty of fun moments along the way too, Tails of Sweetbriers is an enjoyable book that will make you think, open your mind to possibilities, and challenge you to overcome obstacles or limited thinking.

The final chapter consists of the author’s ‘Pearls of Wisdom’: “Overcoming obstacles can give you the confidence to accomplish amazing things…You have the power to make your dreams come true so reach for them and don’t accept anything less!” The questions for readers at the end of the book make this an ideal story for prompting discussion about confidence and self-belief, as well as understanding others who may have greater difficulties than ourselves. Recommended.

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