By: Janice M. Ladendorf
Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
Publishing Date: November 2011
Reviewed by: Mary Lignor
Review Date: March 2013
In the year 1830, 14-year-old Lizbeth McTavish and her father, who is a doctor, move from the hills of Virginia to Pittsburgh, PA where they board a boat that takes them to an Army Encampment at Fort Gibson in what would become the state of Oklahoma. Dr. McTavish has contracted to work at the fort's hospital, as Chief Surgeon for three years. In their family they also have Maybelle, who was a slave but was freed by Lizbet’s late mother.
This book is extremely well-researched and takes the reader back in time to the American Frontier. Lizbet’s mother was obviously a very liberated woman for that moment in time and Lizbet was well taught in the ways of women’s lib before it was a "real" movement. Lizbet’s dad has worked hard to teach his daughter to be independent and he is also a very learned doctor, scientist, and horse whisperer. All this was probably due to the fact that he is part Indian (Ottawa Tribe).
On their journey west they have many adventures as Lizbet and her father fight off men who want to harm Maybelle. The two hunt together and the Doctor tends to sick people in the ports that they visit as well as passengers on the boat. Lizbet, due to her Indian heritage, sees a beautiful silver horse in her dreams and the author introduces readers to a Mustang, who is also having dreams of being owned by a young girl. These passages lead readers into the spirit world of the Indians and readers will wonder if Lizbet will ever see the beautiful horse of her dreams.
Quill says: This young girl is a true wonder and sometimes it’s a bit hard to believe that she is so perfect. In her defense, she is very intelligent and a good daughter and also a good friend to all she meets. Heart of a Falcon is a nice story about a young girl in love with horses.