Wagner, Sharon

About the author

Sharon Wagner (b.1936) is a prolific author. She has written many romantic mysteries for adults, as well as the five horse books listed here. I don’t know the content of all her books, so if anyone can supply details of any additional horse books, I would be very grateful.

Three of her books form a series. The Gypsy series features Wendy, who has been left disabled by an accident which left her horse dead. She doesn’t want to visit her uncle’s dude ranch, but is persuaded to, and finds her feelings are changed when she meets a filly who has been hurt too, and who needs understanding. As the filly is too young to be ridden, the next book deals with Wendy and another horse, Nimblefoot.

Finding the books
The Gypsy series are all easy to find. Prairie Wind is easier to find in paperback, but not impossible in hardback. The Dude Ranch Mystery is reasonably easy to find.

Links and sources
Terri A. Wear: Horse Stories, an Annotated Bibliography, Scarecrow Press, 1987
Many thanks to Susan Bourgeau and Lisa Catz for their help with this section.


The Showing series

Bibliography (horse books only)

Prairie Wind

Meredith Press, New York, 1968, 171 pp, illus Rita Warner
Scholastic, New York,1975

Molly finds an injured mustang filly out on the prairie, and she tries to heal and gentle it. However, when her father finds out, he insists that she prove the filly is safe by winning a ribbon with her at the end of summer gymkhana.

Dude Ranch Mystery

McKay, New York,1969, 213 pp, illus Tom Goddard

“Sherry gets a summer job helping with the horses at an old friend’s dude ranch, but when she arrives, her friend Mr Vincent is mysteriously gone from the ranch and two strangers have taken over.”

Gypsy from Nowhere

Whitman 1972, illus Louis Cary
Western Publishing Company, 1975
Golden Press, pb, cover Jean Helmer (right)

“The filly calmed down and flicked her ears forward to listen. Wendy could see that she was almost perfect, her only obvious flaw being that she had one blue eye and one brown one. Slim, as lightly built as a deer, with dainty legs and a small, graceful head, she was certainly no ordinary wild horse…”

Gypsy and Nimblefoot

Whitman, 1975, illus Louis Cary (right)
Western Publishing Company, 1978
Golden Press, 1980 

“Now that Wendy feels ready to ride again, but her own filly Gypsy is still too young to be ridden, Wendy starts to work with the pinto Nimblefoot who was injured in a fall with a timid dude ranch guest, and is now terrified on rocky trails.”

Gypsy and the Moonstone Stallion

Racine, Wisconsin, 1980, 211pp
Golden Press 1984 pb , illus Marilyn Hamann, cover Jean Helmer

“Gypsy began to whinny and waded out into the lake, her full attention on the distant island. Almost at once, an answering neigh came across the water, and a pale horse suddenly emerged from the trees. Wendy gasped as the horse reared, whinnied once more, then spun around and disappeared back into the  undergrowth. “The Moonstone Stallion,” Wendy breathed….”

Short stories

Golden Prize: and Other Stories About Horses

Whitman 1972, illus Cliff Schule

Golden Ghost Stallion