Book Club Kit: Half Broke Horses

Half Broke HorsesHalf Broke Horses: A True-Life Novel
by Jeannette Walls
First Published: 2009
10 Copies & Reading Guide

This is a novel based on the life of the author’s grandmother, Lily Casey Smith, who learned to break horses in childhood, journeyed five hundred miles as a teen to become a teacher, and ran a vast ranch in Arizona with her husband while raising two children.

Reading Guide:
Simon & Schuster: Includes an Introduction to the Book and Discussion Questions.

The New York Times: “Untamed Heart” by Liesl Schillinger
Entertainment Weekly: “Half Broke Horses – Jeannette Walls” by Lisa Schwarzbaum


  • Simon & Schuster Author Page: Jeannette Walls
  • Jeannette Walls Discusses the Book:

If you enjoyed Half Broke Horses, you might like:
The Glass Castle (Book Club Kit) by Jeannette Walls
These is My Words (Book Club Kit) by Nancy E Turner
Plainsong by Kent Haruf
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

Food Bonus! Check out The Book Club Cookbook for book-inspired recipes for Cowboy Hash and Cornbread Fritters.


One comment on “Book Club Kit: Half Broke Horses

  1. This book is called a True-Life Novel. It is true-life because it is about the author’s grandmother. It is a novel because the author’s grandmother was dead and she could not verify all of the facts. The discussion group really enjoyed discussing Lily’s tenacity. It was fascinating to learn about Arizona’s history during the first half of the 20th century. We talked about how it would have been fun to meet Lily. After reading this book, many book club members wanted to read Jeannette Walls’ other book, The Glass Castle.

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