Judith Tarr aka Caitlin Brennan

US writer of adult historical/fantasy type novels, some of which have a horsy theme. The author is knowledgeable about horses, which shows through in her books. She also writes under the name of Caitlin Brennan. Her horse-related stories are not traditional pony stories, but rather fantasy or history with a horse slant. Apart from her latest book, House of the Star, they are aimed at adults rather than children.

Judith is heavily involved with Lipizzaners, and owns Dancing Horse Farm, where she breeds them, gives lessons and talks on both horses and writing. If you would like to know more about her books or her horses, please visit her websites

The Epona Series (Adult Fiction):
Historical series set in ancient times where humans first interact with horses and worship the great horse goddess Epona. The books are not related in terms of characters, except for that of the horse goddess, but rather follow the fortunes of the ancient nomadic horse-worshipping tribes . They can be read as stand-alones or in order of their historical time-line (as below) - this is however different to the publishing order.


(FORGE [USA] 2000)
Reprinted in paperback
SUMMARY: Set in the far past amongst the nomadic tribes of the Asian steppes, the ancestors of the Celts. Woman are forbidden to become hunters, shaman or go amongst the horses. But Sparrow, daughter of the tribe's shaman, is determined to do all these things. When the horse goddess appears in the form of a white mare she chooses Sparrow to be her servant and shaman.

(FORGE [USA] 1998)
Reprinted in paperback
SUMMARY: The story of Sarama, the beautiful, headstrong young priestess of the tribes who follow the horse goddess. Her majestic white horse is the earthly incarnation of the goddess Epona; her fateful odyssey to a great city where women still rule, unleashes an epic clash of cultures that changes the course of history.

(FORGE [USA] 2001)
Reprinted in paperback
SUMMARY: It is many years later and the people of the horse goddess have migrated westwards and formed alliances with other tribes. But war is on the horizon and a terrifying new invention which harnesses the power of the horse as a deadly weapon - the war chariot.

Collector's Info:
Easy to find in the USA. Harder elsewhere, though not impossible in the UK where the books can be found through Amazon and the odd UK bookseller.

Other Horse & Pony Books (Adult Fiction):

(BANTAM PB [USA] 1989)
Has been recently reprinted as a twentieth anniversary edition which includes the short story from which the novel originated
SUMMARY: Unusual fantasy/historical novel set in Egypt during the time of the Crusades. Wealthy wastrel Hassan angers a magician who punishes him by turning him into an Arab stallion. As he lives as a horse he learns to change his ways.

Collector's Info:
A Wind in Cairo has recently been reprinted and can be bought new. Second-hand copies are easy to find in the USA and (to a slightly lesser extent) in the UK.

As Caitlin Brennan

White Magic/Valeria Series (Adult Fiction):
Historical fantasy series about a woman who has a magical connection to horses and the horse gods. (The mythical horse deities are based on the author's beloved Lipizzaners)

(LUNA PB [USA] 2004)
SUMMARY: Valeria longs to join the elite riders who ride the magical white horses on a mysterious mountain in a dance which shapes the past, present and future. But no woman has ever done so before...

(LUNA PB [USA] 2005)
SUMMARY: Valeria has become a rider of the horse gods but in reaching for too much power too quickly has threatened both herself and her fellow riders.

(LUNA PB [USA] 2006)
SUMMARY: Continuation and conclusion of Valeria's story as she battles to help her people.

Other Horse & Pony Books:

SUMMARY: Teen/young adult fantasy. Elen is a princess of the kingdom of Ymbria. Her greatest wish is to become a rider of worldrunners: the magical horses that are the only safe way to travel the roads through the worlds of Faerie. Now Elen has the chance to fulfill her dream at last, but to do so she must journey to the House of the Star on Earth, the Arizona ranch where the worldrunners live and breed. There, she must try to forge a peace with her people's worst enemy - a traitor from the world of Caledon - and end the war that has been tearing their worlds apart for centuries. If Elen doesn't succeed, the Master of the House of the Star will close both Ymbria and Caledon off from the worldroads forever. Can the wisdom of a worldrunner named Blanca help Elen in her quest to save her world?

Collector's Info:
As far as I know the Valeria series was only issued in paperback. Easy to find in the USA, a bit harder in the UK and elsewhere. House of the Star is in print at the time of this update(2014) and available new in the USA and UK, also as an e-book.