Harris, Catherine

Catherine Harris (Catherine Anne Harris) was another in the fine tradition of those who started their pony book writing career early. We Started a Riding Club, her first book, published in 1954, was written in her teens. She wrote one series: Cuckoo Mill Farm, which features a farming family and their collection of animals. She isn’t as sought after as she perhaps she might be: I like her Cuckoo Mill series, which is full of sparky characters and whizzes along at a fine pace. The standalone stories I don’t think work so well, but they are still entertaining reads.

Bibliography (pony books only)
We Started a Riding Club, 1954
They Rescued a Pony, 1956
The Ponies of Cuckoo Mill Farm, 1958
Riding for Ransom, 1960
If Wishes Were Horses, 1961
To Horse and Away, 1962
Practical Pony Keeping, 1962 (non fiction)

Finding the books
The books are generally easy to find, in their Blackie orange reprint guise at any rate, but if you can find the first editions they have lovely dustjackets. I have a theory that the orange dustjackets put many people off discovering her, but she really is worth persevering with. Since I originally wrote this piece, If Wishes Were Horses has become harder to find, and can be expensive.

Many thanks to Hannah Fleetwood and Konstanze Allsopp for providing photos.