The charmingly imperfect “everyman’s horse” created by artist Jean Abernethy. See how Fergus came to be – his early years, the history of his “friends” – and laugh along with his most loved comic strips, as well as brand new cartoons created exclusively for this book.
Fergus is definitely a familiar face to me after seeing his super anecdotes and humour depicted in beautifully drawn caricatures on my News Feed through Facebook. This is where fame found Fergus and by rightly so where he has become an international favourite of all equestrians who use social media. So when The Essential Fergus book landed in my lap recently, I was more than happy to read, review and have a good chuckle at this loveable horse that all equestrians can relate to.
My first impression was that of a colourful and funky book. A quick flick through, showed vibrant drawings together with the clever placing of the famous horseshoe in the logo on each page of the cartoons. How true was Jean Abernethy’s opening line of the book “When you pick yourself up off the ground, and watch that pony run off – something clicks. You either quit or you find it funny!” Equestrians are no quitters and to love this hobby you definitely need a sense of humour, which depicts the author’s reasons why horses gripped her with a passion.
Reading Jean’s childhood was very reminiscent to mine and I’m sure any equestrian reader will recall riding around on a hobby horse and digesting any knowledge you could find from numerous horse books. This equestrian love continued into the author’s teens when she found putting pencil to paper sketching these amazing animals and finding her friends and family loved seeing these drawings. While at college, demand for her artwork increased and her work began to become recognised which led to a career in drawing and writing comic strips. This is where Fergus was born…
The book then introduces the hundreds of sketches, cartoon and hilarious situations that Fergus finds himself in. As a horse owner, I found my horses traits in every situation and cartoon, which Jean mentioned is the highest compliment she could receive! My favourite cartoons have to be the various mounting block scenarios which I have often found myself in and come a cropper with! They are amusing and make you actually laugh out loud….which that is not as common as you think when reading books these days! This is why this book is so funny and amusing to horse owners, as the everyday situations that Fergus is shown through the cartoons, we see every day in our own horses and ponies. Fergus and his pearls of wisdom through his own horse’s eye is just what you imagine what these horses of ours are thinking. I am sure every horse has a Fergus voice!
The cartoons are divided into sections from Fly Problems to Horse Wisdom, from Barn Smarts to Sweet Companions. Not only was Fergus the laughable character in the book but his super friends which Jean has drawn and created brilliantly and no doubt we can all relate to a horse or pony at our own yard. You can meet Grace the Pony, Hugh the Clydesdale, Kade the Friesian and many more. The one that did make me smile and who was my favourite was Bjorn the Fjord Hjorse, but that must be my Scandinavian genes coming out in me.
I am not going to mention the hundreds of funny cartoons and equine scenarios Fergus show us, it would ruin it for the reader. But I do urge you to buy and read this book and have a copy of it on your shelf. Better still this would make a great present for any horse enthusiast you know. Every equestrian home needs a reminder that all horses provide humour and when your humour has been exhausted by your own horse’s antics – then just remind yourself by flicking through The Essential Fergus that they are probably all from the same mould…
As in the words of the lovable Fergus “Courage keeps us going, Laughter keeps us sane!” Well this book has it in bucket loads.
Written by Samantha Hobden, Editor of Haynet
To purchase your own copy, please click HERE.