Just finished Carl Hester’s autobiography Making it Happen last night. I’ve always found him so funny and entertaining in all of the clips I’ve seen of him posted on YouTube (as well as being a fan of his riding and Charlotte and Valegro, of course), I had to give it a read.
Anyway, I enjoyed it! Not sure if this was the right forum to post this in but I just thought I’d give you all a heads-up on it.
FWIW, here is the review I posted on Amazon:
"Carl Hester is one of my favorite equestrians to watch, not only because of his riding but also because of his entertaining and accessible way of explaining dressage. He’s delightfully funny and his love and concern for his horses always shines forth. The same is true of his autobiography. While I would agree with previous posters that this isn’t a terribly linear narrative (autobiographies seldom are), it does make you feel as if you are sitting down in a pub with Carl, having a few drinks with him and listening to him chat about his life and the horses he has known (certainly not a bad thing).
Hester’s life story is so improbable I’m not sure you could weave it into a convincing fictional tale (and as a fiction writer myself, I certainly wouldn’t dare)–he was born into an unhorsey family (the child of a single mother), grew up on a remote island, took his first horse-related job at a therapeutic riding center…and finally make it to the Olympics. I loved reading about what life was like growing up on the island of Sark as well as his hilarious and self-depreciating anecdotes about the eventing, dressage, and general equestrian scene in Great Britain from the 1970s onward. His descriptions of the various horses and dressage tests he has ridden really make them come to life as if you are riding along with him.
My only tiny complaint (besides the somewhat rambling structure) is that I would have liked perhaps a bit more in the way of background details on some of the people–it’s often taken for granted that the reader knows who he’s talking about, without any introductory description, even for some of the more obscure personalities. And I wouldn’t have minded a bit more detailed behind-the-scenes gossip but perhaps I’m just being greedy."