I’m a terrible horse book collector; if it has a breed I don’t recognize from one of my other books, or if it has a section on bits or tack or something that I particularly like, I’ll end up bringing it home. (I have lots of horse books.)
This was one of those books – I actually found it in a Tandy Leather store. And it’s really, really neat. This is the first book I’ve encountered that actually has a significant section on harnesses and how to put them on, including pleasure driving tack as well as racing and farm work harness. It also has a section on fitting side-saddles, fitting bridles and martingales, racing tack, how saddles are made, how bits are made, different types of bits, different types of saddles, historical saddles, saddles in museums… The Western section is a little light compared to the rest, but it’s not too bad – I’ve definitely seen worse.
The last chapter is more general horsemanship like caring for tack and stable management, and the first few pages are the standard “history of the horse and man” stuff, but the rest of the book is just tack. It’s so much fun to look through, even if you’re just looking at the pictures.