Hart, Alison

Alison Hart is a pseudonym used by the writer Alice Leonhardt (1950 - ). Under her own name, she’s contributed to some iconic ghost-written series, including Nancy Drew, and some lengthy horse series. Alice was a contributor to both the Linda Craig (Ann Sheldon) and Thoroughbred series (Joanna Campbell). The titles she wrote for those series are listed opposite, with links to the respective pages on my website.

As Alison Hart, she’s written numerous other horse stories (for which please see the bibliography below). She’s written a series, Riding Academy, which is set at a school where riding’s on the curriculum: a much more popular setting for American authors than British; possibly because of British unease at setting a story in what would have to be the elite setting of a public school, with all the connotations of exclusion that carries. Americans don’t worry so much.

Alison Hart has also written YA novels, and she’s written a couple of very strong series. Her Race to Freedom trilogy is set in Kentucky, during the American Civil War; relatively unaffected by the war, but still subject to guerilla raids. Hero Gabriel Alexander is a slave, but goes off and joins his father in the Fifth U.S. Colored Cavalry, though he does not fight, but is used as a horse boy. It’s a vivid and illuminating series.

Her Jas duo, Shadow Horse (1999) and Wildfire (2010) are well worth seeking out too, particularly the first, which is a very fine mystery.

Alison Hart started writing early. Her first book, The Wild Dog, was completed at the age of seven, and it is still with her now. She takes it with her on author visits to show children that it is never too early to start writing. As well as writing, Alison Hart is now an adjunct college instructor teaching reading and writing.

Finding the books
Most are in print, or easy to find.

Links and sources
Thanks to Lisa Catz for the photographs

Alison Hart’s website

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