Kristen Halverson’s children’s book, The Tale of Josephine Rose: A Horse’s Magical Neigh, was published in February 2016 by Dog Ear Publishing. Halverson donated $956 of her proceeds from the publication to the equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM) research program run by Dan Howe, PhD, professor at the University of Kentucky (UK) Gluck Equine Research Center.
Now, she hopes a second book in the series will help raise additional funds for EPM research, as well as raising awareness about the disease itself, caused by a parasitic infection in the horse’s central nervous system.
While attending events last year, Halverson said she got a mixed feedback about EPM.
“I’ve encountered a lot of people that did not understand the disease and equine owners that had never heard of it,” Halverson said.
She said she decided to continue to give back to the Gluck Center because she strongly values its mission of improving horse health and well-being. She said she hopes to raise $2,500 from proceeds of The Tale of Noel: The Holiday Horse Angel.
“It is my hope that my mission will create enough awareness in the long run that UK animal science alumni, equine veterinarians, and leading equine philanthropists around the country will begin to give back to EPM research at the Gluck Center so that all equines can receive the best treatment protocols and protection from EPM,” Halverson said.
Howe said he appreciates Halverson’s philanthropic efforts.
“I am very grateful to Kristen for her interest and willingness to support my research program,” he said. “Indeed, it has been the benevolence of people like Kristen that has helped to make the Gluck Equine Research Center successful. Kristen’s gesture is especially gratifying because of the connection to horse-themed children’s books that deliver very positive messages.”
Halverson said she decided to write The Tale of Noel: The Holiday Horse Angel because she enjoys the writing process as a creative outlet. She said she leverages her creative writing skills as a communication vehicle to further her EPM awareness mission, enhance EPM research funds, and honor her late Thoroughbred, Nino Tempo, who was affected by EPM in 2010. She used her Clydesdale and Morgan horses as inspiration for the story, and explores hope, kindness, and thoughtfulness in the book’s pages.
In The Tale of Noel: The Holiday Horse Angel, Clydesdale Josephine Rose (who also stars in The Tale of Josephine Rose: A Horse’s Magical Neigh), a former carriage and sleigh horse, is now settled into an Iowa farm with her new friends. However, she misses her hitch partner from Canada, a Morgan horse. She searches the night sky for a falling star so she can make her Christmas wish. She loses hope until she meets an enchanting horse angel named Noel in a blizzard.
Halverson’s first-edition paperback book can be purchased at createspace.com and amazon.com; she said purchases from the CreateSpace e-store will enabled her to give more in donations. The second-edition hardcover book will be available on Amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com by October. Find the book and additional information at facebook.com/theholidayhorseangel, twitter.com/authorkristenh1, and kristenhalverson.com.
Halverson plans to write one more book in this series.
Katie Lampert is a marketing and communications intern at the UK Gluck Equine Research Center.
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