Book Review: Little Alf by Hannah Russell

Updated: May 29

Little Alf is the story of a tiny Shetland pony with dwarfism who came into Hannah Russell’s life at the perfect moment. She had struggled with long-term injuries and recently found out she could no longer ride – a heart-breaking realisation for any horse rider and lover.

But while she could no longer take to the saddle, Alf would provide Hannah with ample entertainment and, as it turned out, inspiration for a series of children’s books.

While reading this book, I felt I had so much in common with Hannah and it seemed like every chapter highlighted a similarity in our personalities, or a shared idea or experience.

We’re both animal lovers, we both ‘found’ our horses at a tough time in our lives, and we’ve both volunteered and fundraised for the RDA. We have also both been inspired by our best friends to write children’s books based on them, we are/will be donating a percentage of our profits to charity, and we both talk to our animals like they’re babies!

It was amazing to read Little Alf and feel some sort of connection to someone I’ve never met before, but with whom I seem to share so many thoughts and ideas.

I devoured this book in 24 hours, so you can probably tell that I enjoyed it! It is a relatively straightforward read, but I’m a slow reader so it suited me perfectly.

The story itself brings about all sorts of emotions. Sadness at the thought of a horse lover never being able to ride again, and also that this cute little pony had been rejected by its mother. Happiness that Alf found a home with such a loving family, and that he and Hannah were able to take care of each other. Frustration when people were unsupportive and mean about some of Hannah’s ideas.

There was also plenty of laughter with the endless funny stories of Alf getting into himself and Hannah into trouble. My favourite is the one where he ended up in the neighbour’s vegetable patch! For a pony that is only twenty-eight inches tall, he has a huge personality to make up for it!

If you are a fan of animals and feel-good stories, this book is for you. I really hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

You can find out more about Hannah and Alf, including this book and her children’s stories, on her website. I would also like to congratulate Hannah for sending her 10th Little Alf book to be published this week! I can’t wait for the day that I publish my 10th Dave and Darcy adventure.



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