Cory Iverson's junior year is off to a lousy start.
Publicly humiliated by the school's hottest guy and terrorized by a bullying band director, Cory flees sports try-outs and just about everything else she begins, earning a reputation as a loser as well as a quitter. But when her wandering dog leads her to the barn of a former Grand Prix rider, she finds a welcome refuge in the familiar world of horses.
It's not too long before she starts dreaming of showing in one of the country's most prestigious shows--a totally unrealistic hope--until she rescues a mysterious horse with some unusual talents. But her road to success is littered with roadblocks as events spin out of control: prescription painkillers appear in her mother's purse; her ballerina sister wastes away before her eyes; her boyfriend is keeping secrets; and her normally opinionated trainer becomes strangely evasive.
Worst of all, the horse show world is not what she imagined. It isn't long before Cory's winning spree attracts the attention of a brutal trainer with a string of unexplained horse deaths in her wake. When Cory lands in the crosshairs, she has to decide if she'll once again back down and flee or stand up for herself, her horse, and her dreams.
Inspired by everyday miracles, L.R. Trovillion weaves magical stories of hurting people who find hope through horses in her Maryland Equestrian Novel series. Although she earned a degree in Russian and spent a career in government service, her real love has been caring for and working with horses. That love shines through in her series, focusing on the healing power of horses in the lives of teens facing complex and sometimes dangerous family situations. Believing there is more to this world than meets the eye, she adds a dash of the supernatural to each story. L. R. Trovillion lives on a small horse farm in Maryland with her husband, daughter, and several animals that really run the place. Her other works have appeared in Baltimore magazine, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and various poetry anthologies.
Recent research has determined that horses recognize faces (of course they do) as well as the emotional expression on faces and react accordingly. Any rider will tell you that horses just "seem to know" what mood you are in and how confident you are as a rider. And they adjust their mood and behavior. I think that is why horses have become so useful as therapists for various emotional and psychological troubles as well as physiological. In my books, the healing traits of horses are the heart of the story, bringing hurt people back to wholeness.
False Gods: The Show Jumper's Challenge
For a split second, all forward motion stopped under her. Epiphany hesitated before the jump, sending a spray of blue-gray stone dust in front of her like a smokescreen. Cory catapulted out of the saddle like from a slingshot onto Epi’s neck. Her face brushed the rough hair of the mane as she desperately wrapped her arms around the mare’s muscular sweat-soaked neck. Epiphany lifted her head in an upward jerk, smashing into Cory’s cheek and causing pinpoints of light to dance before her eyes. The sharp smell of horse sweat wafted in a cloud as Cory sniffed in a combination of dust and blood.