Michael Maguire

British author. Mr. Maguire was born in 1954 in Islington, London. He studied racehorse stud management and spent two years working at a stud before become a journalist for the racing newspaper, The Sporting Life and also freelance. His interests in racing - both horse and greyhound - provided fuel for his novels. He started writing racing thrillers, then went on to pen a handful of more unusual stories for younger readers featuring horses.

His most popular horsy character is Mylor who is a beautiful but extremely unusual horse, and who features in a short children's series. Apart from the books listed on this page, he also wrote one other children's (non-pony) novel called
Superkids. He has recently completed the long-awaited sequel to his magical dog/horse story Swiftly and this has just been published.

Michael Maguire has his own website where you can find out more about the books, plus photos of the author and latest news.


Mylor series:

1) MYLOR THE MOST POWERFUL HORSE IN THE WORLD
(W H ALLEN 1976)
ILLUSTRATED BY NICK MORGAN
Reprinted in paperback by Star/Target in 1977.
Reprinted in 2012 by Author House in both hardback and paperback.
EDITIONS PICTURED: Star paperback edition, Author House paperback edition.
SUMMARY: Brother and sister, Roger and Angel go to stay with their friend and his inventor grandfather at Parkway Grange. There they meet Mylor a very unusual horse, and become involved in an even stranger competition between inventors, culminating in Mylor running in the Grand National. But in the end Mylor proves he is really no different from any other horse.
PONYMAD VIEW: A rip roaring pony adventure story with a very unusual horsy hero! Mylor is based on a real horse and you can see a picture of him on the author's website. Read my review for more.
PONYMAD RATING: 4 HORSESHOES
Read full review

2) MYLOR THE KIDNAP
(W H ALLEN 1976)
ILLUSTRATED BY NICK MORGAN
Reprinted in paperback by Star/Target.
Reprinted in paperback by Author House in 2012.
EDITIONS PICTURED: 1st edition, Author House paperback edition.
SUMMARY: The children return to Parkway Grange, eager to see if Mylor has been restored to health. But there is trouble ahead: the Professor faces losing his house due to debt and a mysterious unpleasant neighbour is causing trouble. Paul is hoping to raise some money by taking part in a jousting competition but then Mylor disappears, caught up in a dastardly kidnapping attempt.
PONYMAD RATING: 3 HORSESHOES

Collectors Info:
The short series has been recently reprinted and is available new in the UK and USA, including e-book editions. The older paperback edition of Mylor can be found in the UK without a great deal of trouble, though prices vary a lot. Hardback editions and the older editions of the sequel are quite rare, especially outside of the USA.

Simon Drake Series (Adult Fiction):
Short series of adult racing thrillers. They all feature the character of racing investigator Simon Drake.

PROBABLE READING ORDER:

1) SHOT SILK
(WINGATE 1975)
Reprinted as a paperback by Tandem.
Also a  large print edition published by Ulverscroft.
EDITIONS PICTURED: 1st edition, large print edition.
SUMMARY: Adult racing thriller. Investigator Simon Drake receives a mysterious note from a stable boy but before he can follow it up the boy turns up dead, victim of a hit and run. Although he wants to concentrate on running his stud, Drake somehow can't escape getting caught up in the mystery.

2) SLAUGHTER HORSE
(WINGATE 1975)
Reprinted in hardback and paperback.
Thriller Book Club edition published in 1975.
Also large print editions published by Ulverscroft and Crescent
EDITIONS PICTURED: Thriller Book Club edition, large print editions.
SUMMARY: Adult acing thriller. Why are a trainer's horses suddenly running out of their skin? Simon Drake investigates and gets drawn into a new mystery involving the attempted theft of a valuable horse.
PONYMAD RATING: 3 HORSESHOES

3) SCRATCHPROOF
(WINGATE 1976)
Reprinted in paperback by Star and Crescent.
Thriller Book Club edition published in 1977.
USA edition published by St. Martin's Press in 1977.
Also a  large print edition published by Ulverscroft.
EDITIONS PICTURED: 1st edition, large print edition.
SUMMARY: Adult acing thriller. Simon Drake gets mixed up in the world of films when he is hired by an actress to investigate what is wrong with her horses. Soon he finds out she is also involved with some shady goings-on on the race course...

Collectors Info:
These are quite easy to find in the UK and to a slightly lesser extent in the USA. Quite a few of the copies for sale are ex-library large print editions. Copies can also be found in local libraries, although again tend to be the large print editions.

Swiflty Series:
Short mystery series with some fantasy elements. Although primarily about a mysterious dog , the books also feature horses. The second book in the series was written some time after the first, in order to tie in with the new revised edition of Swiftly.

1) SWIFTLY
(BOOK GUILD 1998)
Also an Ulverscroft large print edition in 2002.
Also recently revised and reprinted by AuthorHouse in 2011.
EDITIONS PICTURED: 1st edition, large print edition, Author House edition.
SUMMARY: An unusual young adult fantasy cum thriller set in Devon.
Sky and Daniel, who work at Oyster Gables Animal Shelter, take in Degsey, an unusual greyhound who seems to have some sort of supernatural power which enables him to influence events and people. When horses start being stolen around the area, Sky and Daniel are drawn into danger. Can Degsey's special powers save them?
PONYMAD RATING: 3-4 HORSESHOES

2) SWIFTLY 2
(AUTHORHOUSE 2011)
Reprinted in paperback by Author House in 2011.
EDITIONS PICTURED: 1st edition.
SUMMARY: The crew at Oyster Gables, with the help of Degsey, try and foil a cruel badger baiting ring. But they end up in terrible danger from the ruthless men behind the baiting.

Collectors Info:
Both books are in print and available new. Older copies of Swiftly are harder to find, although the large print edition may be available at some libraries.

Other Horse & Pony Books (Adult Fiction):

SCORCHER 
(W. H. ALLEN 1987)
Reprinted in paperback by Star.
Also a large print edition published by Ulverscroft.
EDITIONS PICTURED: 1st edition, paperback edition, large print edition.
SUMMARY: Adult acing thriller. After an accident in The National, jockey Charlie Boxer's career is over. Initially seeking solace in the bottle, he then pulls himself together and begins to work on a biography of top trainer and ex-champion jockey Tom McKay. But he soon discovers secrets that people want to keep hidden - at any costů

Collectors Info:
Fairly easy to get hold of in the UK and USA. The large print edition still seems to be in print in the USA and may also be found in some libraries.