Light Horse Boy

Download Teachers’ Notes (pdf)

Click HERE for high-res cover image

Written by Dianne Wolfer
Illustrated by Brian Simmonds
Published by Fremantle Press, 2013

  • Winner WA Premier’s Award 2014 Children’s Books
  • CBCA Honour Book 2014

Buy now
from your local bookshop or from
Fremantle Press (Australia)
Booktopia (Australia)
Dymocks Online (Australia)
Book Depository (UK)
Amazon (UK)
Amazon (US)
Barnes & Noble (US)

Read an article about the ‘Light’ series on the Chauvel Foundation website.


In 1914 Jim and Charlie abandon the Australian outback for the excitement and adventure of the war to end all wars. But in the Light Horse they quickly discover the brutal realities of life on the front line. And nothing will ever be the same again.

Featuring stunning charcoal sketches by Brian Simmonds alongside primary source documents and historical photos, Light Horse Boy goes behind the scenes of the great ANZAC legends for an intimate look at their experience of World War I.

Light Horse Boy was selected by Moss Vale High School for their ‘whole school bookclub’ title in 2015. 700 students/staff read the book…



  • Honour Book, 2014 CBCA Book of the Year (younger readers)
  • Winner, 2014 WA Premier’s Book Awards

Book trailer


‘This is a fine book that will add much to our understanding of the Australian spirit as it engages in war. Should be compulsory reading for all upper grade students.’ – Reading Time

‘… an engaging narrative nonfiction text for primary-aged children.’ – Junior Bookseller+Publisher

‘Wolfer’s latest foray into historical fiction is a successful one.’ – Magpies

‘This is a powerful and moving book, highly recommended for ages 9 to 14 years.’ – Child Magazine

‘Beautifully written and meticulously researched.‘ – Kids’ Book Review

‘… a fabulous picture book for older readers, just in time for ANZAC day.’ – Scoop Magazine

‘The book is full of photographs, letters, telegrams and illustrations, which make this an engaging narrative non fiction text for primary-aged children’ – Bookseller+Publisher

‘… the story of the Light Horse soldiers is a fascinating one.’ Children’s War Books

Teachers’ Notes

Other book in the series

Lighthouse Girl cover

Lighthouse Girl

In The Lamplight

LLH 138px high

The Last Light Horse

Behind the scenes

In 2011, my husband Pete and I travelled to Gallipoli. The services at Lone Pine and ANZAC Cove were deeply moving and provided valuable research for Light Horse Boy.

 Check out this fun New Zealand knitting link, all about how NZ women would knit clothing for soldiers during World War I (external link).

Here’s an interesting link to a piece on ‘The Project’ which honours War Animals: http://

6 thoughts on “Light Horse Boy

  1. Mary

    We have just finished reading Light Horse Boy as a family in the lead up to Anzac Day. Such a great book – I read it aloud and the story had my voice cracking as I tried to hold back tears while reading. An amazing way for my boys (aged 13, 11 and 4) to learn about what happened and how the young soldiers would have felt. Thank you so much. We are a home schooling family so I will be recommending it to all our friends.

    1. Dianne Wolfer Post author

      Hello Mary, what lovely feedback, thank you.
      I’m so glad that your family enjoyed Light Horse Boy. There’s a partner book, Lighthouse Girl which you might like too. It overlaps with Fay Howe waving to Charlie in Albany.
      All the best to you and your boys for Anzac Day and thanks also for recommending further…
      Cheers, Dianne

    1. Dianne Wolfer Post author

      Hi April, I wrote Light Horse Boy after I finished Lighthouse Girl and wanted to know more about the AIF soldiers who sailed in convoy from Albany (where I live) and also I was curious to know more about their horses and mascots 🙂


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