I am seizing this opportunity to put a piece of my book that didn't make the final edit into this piece.
Diana Pullein-Thompson was the first of the Pullein-Thompson sisters to get within sniffing distance of being published. Riding magazine had a young riders’ section, which ran monthly competitions. The November 1940 issue asked readers to write a critical appraisal of any article in Riding. “Tell me,” they said, “what you feel are the good points and if there any bad ones—do not mind saying so. I shall not tell the author!” Diana Pullein-Thompson, then aged fifteen, won the competition. Riding certainly got a critical review. Riding said “It is so much better to be fairly critical than just to say that all the articles in RIDING are lovely. Well, the prizewinner for the seniors produced a good and critical review, and well-written, too, and the lady’s name is Diana Pullein-Thompson...” Riding didn’t follow their normal practice and publish her entry. Diana said:
“With all the arrogance of youth, I had chosen a piece by a well-established expert – was it Faudel- Phillips? – on jumping with the Weedon seat, which I tore slowly apart, unfavourably comparing the style he recommended with the Italian forward seat. For once Riding broke with tradition and did not publish the winning entry, for fear, I suppose of offending the expert.”
Bearing in mind the number of times Major Faudel-Phillips appeared as a contributor in Riding, she was probably right. It was in the same issue in which her success was announced that the first Pullein-Thompson article appeared: ‘Cocktail Capitulates’ (Riding Magazine, January 1941) was written by all three.
|Collins, 1951, first edition|
|Armada paperback, 1960s|
|Collins Pony Library, 1973|
|Armada paperback, 1980s|
A Pony for Sale was published by Collins in 1951, illustrated by Sheila Rose. It first appeared in paperback when published by the paperback arm of Collins, Armada, in the 1960s, with a cover illustration I believe to be by Peter Archer. The book was part of the Collins Pony Library. Many of the Library had new illustrations done by artists who could draw horses: sadly A Pony for Sale was not one of them. The last printing was an Armada paperback with the classic 1980s photo cover.
~ 0 ~
For much more on Diana Pullein-Thompson, including pictures of all her books, she has a page on my website.