A wild carpet of moss glided beneath the colt’s flying feet. Squirrels, terrified by the thunder coming down on them, scurried to trees and climbed speedily for self-protection. A rabbit flattened himself out in a hollow. Black Sand raced through open areas, too, masses of wild flowers, dandelions and buttercups, a thousand colored heads, all dancing in the spring breeze.
The path grew narrow with trees and brush closing in on them. Pam slowed Black Sand to a canter, careful that there were no obstacles in his path. Long, willowy branches slapped against her body.
Suddenly, the colt reared, uttered an insane neighing shriek and, in a single leap, charged off the path. She managed to keep her seat, realizing what had happened. The tree branches had lashed him, and he had taken them for a whip. - Walter Farley, The Black Stallion and the Girl
Pam’s blood caught fire. She released her hold on his mouth. Never had she known anything like it, a furious, magnificent soaring flight! She pressed her face hard against his neck, her body light, almost fluid like his. She was one with him, flying with him, and she had no wish but to soar forever, wherever he would take her.
Walter Farley’s love for horses began when he was a small boy in Syracuse, New York, and continued as he grew up in New York City, where his family moved. Unlike most city children, he was able to fulfill this love through an uncle who was a professional horseman. Young Walter spent much of his time with this uncle, learning about the different kinds of horse training and the people associated with them.
Walter Farley began to write his first book, The Black Stallion, while he was a student at Brooklyn’s Erasmus Hall High School and Mercersburg Academy in Pennsylvania. He eventually finished it, and it was published in 1941 while he was still an undergraduate at Columbia University
. . . . In his life he wrote a total of thirty-four books. . .
Mr. Farley and his wife, Rosemary, had four children, whom they raised on a farm in Pennsylvania and at a beach house in Florida. Horses, dogs and cats were always part of the household.
In 1989 Mr. Farley was honored by his hometown library in Venice, Florida, which established the Walter Farley Literary Landmark in its children’s wing. Mr. Farley died in October 1989, shortly before the publication of The Young Black Stallion, the twenty-first book in the Black Stallion series. Mr. Farley co-authored The Young Black Stallion with his son, Steven.