INTO THE DARK: “A wonderful story for families to share”

Into the Dark, Book #3 of the Legend of the Great Horse trilogy, won best Classic title in the Reader Views Literary Awards — the following is the award review:

“A wonderful story for families to share”

2016 Reader Views Award
“Into the Dark” concludes the Legend of the Great Horse trilogy by John Royce. Time traveler Meagan finds herself waking up in Texas in 1861, where she meets Dan Beardon, owner of the Great Horse Red, and her future soul mate. As Meagan travels through some rough times with Dan she finds herself appreciating him more and more, and is devastated when she is pulled into her next adventure, which is in New York, in 1919. Then she is briefly off to war-torn Poland in 1939. Still seeking a way home, Meagan ends up in the dreary future, finding herself desperate to either go home or be back with Dan. It is in the future that she gains the most knowledge about the past. She also discovers that her special Great Horse’s gift was for time travel. Other Great Horses have different gifts, such as healing.

There is no easy way to have a “happy ending” for a character who was placed on a journey such as this. Meagan learns a lot as she travels through time and experiences each of the Great Horses, as led to her by her special horse, Promise. Meagan’s experiences mature her beyond her years, so that even when she is able to return home, she no longer feels like she belongs. She must decide in her heart where she really wants to be, and figure out how to get there. Her journey is truly incredible.

“Into the Dark” allowed me to jump right into the third book of an incredible trilogy. Having grown up with an affinity towards horses, I found myself relating to the main character; I also gained a greater appreciation for these incredible animals, and the roles that they have played in helping mankind evolve.

I noticed that some websites promoting this book categorize it as being for children from 8-12 years with a 3rd to 7th grade reading level. I have to note that I completely disagree with this categorization. While there is no reason a child should not read this book, I felt that the reading level was much higher and as an adult, I did not feel at all like I was reading a children’s book. I would have loved to have read a novel like this when I was in the age range listed, however, I do not believe that an average reader in that category will find it to be easy reading. No matter what, everyone who reads this trilogy will find themselves truly captivated by the story.

I highly recommend “Into the Dark” by John Royce. I think it is a wonderful story for families to share. Paige Lovitt for Reader Views

» Reader Views Literary Awards – Review of INTO THE DARK

 Into the dark cover image

The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy is a well-researched adventure through history–on horseback. The story is told through the eyes of a modern young horsewoman lost in time.

Into the Dark (Book #3) won best Classic in the Reader Views Literary Awards (2015/2016).


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Amazon Hall of Fame Reviewer: Into the Dark “a display of equine fireworks”

New review by Into the Dark, Book #3 of The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy, by Amazon Hall of Fame Reviewer E.A. Lovitt:

E. A. Lovitt | Amazon Hall of Fame Reviewer 5-Star Review


Book III of The Legend of the Great Horse concludes John Royce’s sweeping historical fantasy about horses and horsemanship with a display of equine fireworks that made it well worth the wait. The ending was satisfying on both a philosophical and emotional level. The author’s heroine, Meagan Roberts grows into a believable young woman, much of that growth (as with most of us) rooted in pain and sorrow. I was sorry to say good-bye to her and all of the Great Horses that accompanied her on her wild journey through time.

Much of Into the Dark takes place in Texas and Kentucky just as America’s brutal Civil War is heating up. When Royce takes time with his characters, as he did in this section, they are infused with life. When Meagan has to choose between her Great Horse and her new-found love, the reader will understand and share in that agonizing decision.

I was especially fond of the two 20th Century vignettes about horses that I already knew and loved: Man O’War and the British pony, Stroller who earned (along with his rider) a silver medal in the 1968 Olympics. The section on Man O’War reminded me very much of Walter Farley’s book about this great Thoroughbred, who was portrayed by both authors as a fiery, almost mythological beast that burned his way down the race track and into our dreams. On the other hand, the section on Stroller’s competition in the 1968 team jumping event almost broke my heart. The author draws on his own deep knowledge of equestrian sport and of the equine heart to give his readers an understanding of just what Stroller accomplished. It reminded me of the race caller’s description of the great Zenyatta as she finished first in the Breeders’ Cup Classic: “This is one we’ll never forget!”

Good-bye, Meagan. This is one we’ll never forget.

» See review on Amazon

graphic image of knight chesspieceInto the Dark is the 3rd book of The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy, an award winning time-travel adventure through history—on horseback! The story follows the journey of a modern horsewoman lost in the distant past.

The trilogy books have won multiple national awards including the 2009 Eric Hoffer Award for best Young Adult Fiction, and the 2010 Mom’s Choice Award for best family-friendly Young Adult Fantasy.

Further information about this unique ‘creative non-fiction’ novel can be found at