Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Jeannette Walls's Half Broke Horses. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
Half Broke Horses: Introduction
Half Broke Horses: Plot Summary
Half Broke Horses: Detailed Summary & Analysis
Half Broke Horses: Themes
Half Broke Horses: Quotes
Half Broke Horses: Characters
Half Broke Horses: Terms
Half Broke Horses: Symbols
Half Broke Horses: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Jeannette Walls
Historical Context of Half Broke Horses
Other Books Related to Half Broke Horses
- Full Title: Half Broke Horses
- When Written: 2009
- Where Written: United States
- When Published: 2009
- Literary Period: Contemporary
- Genre: Novel based on true events
- Setting: Multiple locations across the southwestern United States over the first half of the twentieth century, with a particular focus on Texas and Arizona.
- Climax: Lily and Jim reject Gaiter’s offer to return as managers of his ranch, not wanting to work on behalf of someone else’s home. Realizing how penned in they are by the city, however, the two then decide to leave Phoenix to live closer to the land once again.
- Antagonist: The natural world, societal prejudice
- Point of View: First person
Extra Credit for Half Broke Horses
Family Literature. Walls was able to corroborate certain facts about the death of Robert Casey, Lily’s grandfather, because his own life is detailed in the book Robert Casey and the Ranch on the Rio Hondo by James D. Shinkle.
Property Value. The Texas land that Lily inherits from her father and ultimately decides not to sell makes an appearance in Walls’ memoir The Glass Castle. As an adult, Walls discovers that Rosemary had inherited the land from Lily but refused to sell it, despite the fact that by then it was worth about a million dollars—money that, Walls notes, could have drastically improved her and her siblings’ childhoods.