above:  Wild mustangs on the American western plains   Wild Horse Annie -Friend of the Mustangs , written by  Tracey Fern  & illustrated by  Steven Salerno  -published by  Farrar Straus Giroux , 2019   The inspiring true story of American  Velma Bronn Johnston  (1912-1977), horse lover and animal-rights activist who was the driving force behind Federal Laws passed in the early 1970’s protecting the lives of wild horses and burros on public lands… and how she elicited help from thousands of children to bring attention to this pressing issue.    “Salerno’s full-page mixed-media illustrations exude the expanse of the West and invite intimacy with Annie all while maintaining a playful air of adventure. Readers will root for Annie and the mustangs she fought to protect”   -School Library Journal    “Salerno's sun-drenched illustrations capture the equally hardy spirits of the mustangs and Annie herself. . . An uplifting tale of animal rights, perseverance, and kids' power to make a difference”   -Kirkus Reviews    “Salerno’s illustrations combine loping lines, sketched details, and rubbed textures to conjure the vanished west of the mid-20th century, and they cleverly balance a running mustang herd with letters stampeding from Annie’s typewriter”   -Publishers Weekly    “This look at how one motivated individual and an army of young idealists can effect change may leave readers with the encouragement needed to tackle their own campaigns”    -The Horn Book    - A Junior Library Guild Selection
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  cover of  Wild Horse Annie -Friend of the Mustangs  -the cover is derived from one of the inside of the book illustrations, which depicts Annie, whose body was bent and twisted from childhood polio, dreaming of soaring with the wild mustangs…   - A Junior Library Guild Selection     see Steven’s complete list of published picture books to date
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  young Velma learning to ride by her father -atop his horse Baldy on their ranch in Nevada.
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  in 1923 Velma was suddenly stricken by polio and spent a long time in the hospital in a body cast… But the disease left her spine permanently bent and her face twisted. Eventually she was able to ride ride horses again, and her love for these beautiful animals only grew stronger…
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) Velma arriving in Washington DC with some of her participating “pencil brigade” members and the the thousands of letters they’ve written in support of saving wild horses.
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  a rough preliminary pencil & ink wash sketch, depicting hunters killing wild mustangs… Millions of them were killed by cattle ranchers protecting their grazing lands, or by hunters selling them to slaughterhouses for pet foods and fertilizers.
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) Velma discovering cattle trucks loaded with wild horses are bringing them to slaughterhouses to be killed for pet foods and fertilizers.
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:   Wild Horse Annie  sitting at her kitchen table on the ranch typing letter after letter after letter to Senators, Congressmen, and other lawmakers encouraging them to take action to protect all wild horse…
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) the adult Velma Bronn Johnston (having earned her nickname:  Wild Horse Annie ) appearing before State senators and legislators enlightening them on the pressing issue of wild horses and burros being slaughtered…
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) the thousands of letters sent to Washington DC from children from all over the country -expressing their concern about the plight of wild horses in America… letters the children wrote to assist  Wild Horse Annie  and her campaign to save all wild horses and burros.
       
     
 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  one of the refined sketch stages, this one a pencil sketch which was then scanned into Photoshop and some additional slight touches of color added in. Here is  Wild Horse Annie  riding her horse, with wild mustangs seen in the background running free…
       
     
  above:  Wild mustangs on the American western plains   Wild Horse Annie -Friend of the Mustangs , written by  Tracey Fern  & illustrated by  Steven Salerno  -published by  Farrar Straus Giroux , 2019   The inspiring true story of American  Velma Bronn Johnston  (1912-1977), horse lover and animal-rights activist who was the driving force behind Federal Laws passed in the early 1970’s protecting the lives of wild horses and burros on public lands… and how she elicited help from thousands of children to bring attention to this pressing issue.    “Salerno’s full-page mixed-media illustrations exude the expanse of the West and invite intimacy with Annie all while maintaining a playful air of adventure. Readers will root for Annie and the mustangs she fought to protect”   -School Library Journal    “Salerno's sun-drenched illustrations capture the equally hardy spirits of the mustangs and Annie herself. . . An uplifting tale of animal rights, perseverance, and kids' power to make a difference”   -Kirkus Reviews    “Salerno’s illustrations combine loping lines, sketched details, and rubbed textures to conjure the vanished west of the mid-20th century, and they cleverly balance a running mustang herd with letters stampeding from Annie’s typewriter”   -Publishers Weekly    “This look at how one motivated individual and an army of young idealists can effect change may leave readers with the encouragement needed to tackle their own campaigns”    -The Horn Book    - A Junior Library Guild Selection
       
     

above: Wild mustangs on the American western plains

Wild Horse Annie -Friend of the Mustangs, written by Tracey Fern & illustrated by Steven Salerno -published by Farrar Straus Giroux, 2019

The inspiring true story of American Velma Bronn Johnston (1912-1977), horse lover and animal-rights activist who was the driving force behind Federal Laws passed in the early 1970’s protecting the lives of wild horses and burros on public lands… and how she elicited help from thousands of children to bring attention to this pressing issue.

“Salerno’s full-page mixed-media illustrations exude the expanse of the West and invite intimacy with Annie all while maintaining a playful air of adventure. Readers will root for Annie and the mustangs she fought to protect” -School Library Journal

“Salerno's sun-drenched illustrations capture the equally hardy spirits of the mustangs and Annie herself. . . An uplifting tale of animal rights, perseverance, and kids' power to make a difference” -Kirkus Reviews

“Salerno’s illustrations combine loping lines, sketched details, and rubbed textures to conjure the vanished west of the mid-20th century, and they cleverly balance a running mustang herd with letters stampeding from Annie’s typewriter” -Publishers Weekly

“This look at how one motivated individual and an army of young idealists can effect change may leave readers with the encouragement needed to tackle their own campaigns” -The Horn Book

- A Junior Library Guild Selection

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  cover of  Wild Horse Annie -Friend of the Mustangs  -the cover is derived from one of the inside of the book illustrations, which depicts Annie, whose body was bent and twisted from childhood polio, dreaming of soaring with the wild mustangs…   - A Junior Library Guild Selection     see Steven’s complete list of published picture books to date
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: cover of Wild Horse Annie -Friend of the Mustangs -the cover is derived from one of the inside of the book illustrations, which depicts Annie, whose body was bent and twisted from childhood polio, dreaming of soaring with the wild mustangs…

- A Junior Library Guild Selection

see Steven’s complete list of published picture books to date

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  young Velma learning to ride by her father -atop his horse Baldy on their ranch in Nevada.
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: young Velma learning to ride by her father -atop his horse Baldy on their ranch in Nevada.

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  in 1923 Velma was suddenly stricken by polio and spent a long time in the hospital in a body cast… But the disease left her spine permanently bent and her face twisted. Eventually she was able to ride ride horses again, and her love for these beautiful animals only grew stronger…
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: in 1923 Velma was suddenly stricken by polio and spent a long time in the hospital in a body cast… But the disease left her spine permanently bent and her face twisted. Eventually she was able to ride ride horses again, and her love for these beautiful animals only grew stronger…

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) Velma arriving in Washington DC with some of her participating “pencil brigade” members and the the thousands of letters they’ve written in support of saving wild horses.
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: (cropped view) Velma arriving in Washington DC with some of her participating “pencil brigade” members and the the thousands of letters they’ve written in support of saving wild horses.

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  a rough preliminary pencil & ink wash sketch, depicting hunters killing wild mustangs… Millions of them were killed by cattle ranchers protecting their grazing lands, or by hunters selling them to slaughterhouses for pet foods and fertilizers.
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: a rough preliminary pencil & ink wash sketch, depicting hunters killing wild mustangs… Millions of them were killed by cattle ranchers protecting their grazing lands, or by hunters selling them to slaughterhouses for pet foods and fertilizers.

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) Velma discovering cattle trucks loaded with wild horses are bringing them to slaughterhouses to be killed for pet foods and fertilizers.
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: (cropped view) Velma discovering cattle trucks loaded with wild horses are bringing them to slaughterhouses to be killed for pet foods and fertilizers.

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:   Wild Horse Annie  sitting at her kitchen table on the ranch typing letter after letter after letter to Senators, Congressmen, and other lawmakers encouraging them to take action to protect all wild horse…
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: Wild Horse Annie sitting at her kitchen table on the ranch typing letter after letter after letter to Senators, Congressmen, and other lawmakers encouraging them to take action to protect all wild horse…

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) the adult Velma Bronn Johnston (having earned her nickname:  Wild Horse Annie ) appearing before State senators and legislators enlightening them on the pressing issue of wild horses and burros being slaughtered…
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: (cropped view) the adult Velma Bronn Johnston (having earned her nickname: Wild Horse Annie) appearing before State senators and legislators enlightening them on the pressing issue of wild horses and burros being slaughtered…

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  (cropped view) the thousands of letters sent to Washington DC from children from all over the country -expressing their concern about the plight of wild horses in America… letters the children wrote to assist  Wild Horse Annie  and her campaign to save all wild horses and burros.
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: (cropped view) the thousands of letters sent to Washington DC from children from all over the country -expressing their concern about the plight of wild horses in America… letters the children wrote to assist Wild Horse Annie and her campaign to save all wild horses and burros.

 click upper right corner of images to enlarge   above:  one of the refined sketch stages, this one a pencil sketch which was then scanned into Photoshop and some additional slight touches of color added in. Here is  Wild Horse Annie  riding her horse, with wild mustangs seen in the background running free…
       
     

click upper right corner of images to enlarge

above: one of the refined sketch stages, this one a pencil sketch which was then scanned into Photoshop and some additional slight touches of color added in. Here is Wild Horse Annie riding her horse, with wild mustangs seen in the background running free…