Canterwood Crest is a series of pre-teen novels by American author Jessica Burkhart,
|Canterwood Crest Series|
|Publicist Company:||Simon & Schuster Aladdin MIX|
|Cover Artist:||Monica Stevenson|
|Books:||Take the Reins|
Behind the Bit
Little White Lies
Home Sweet Drama
Scandals, Rumors, and Lies
Upon arriving at the prestigious Canterwood Crest Academy, former Connecticut student Sasha Silver plans to join the school's equestrian team. However, she is met with resistance from three popular members known as the "Trio" (Heather, Julia, and Alison), who view her as a threat to their social status. Internal conflict sets the stage for the story, with the initial focus being Sasha's efforts to make the team and sustain her morale. In the midst of things, a boy named Jacob begins to earn her romantic attention. However, other romantic interests also enter the story, leading to love triangles and other personal matters.
- A gifted horseback rider, Sasha begins attending Canterwood Crest during Take the Reins, accompanied by her horse, Charm. Her intent early on is to join the school's equestrian team. However, this is initially met with resentment from the popular Trio. She becomes fast friends with a fellow rider named Callie and roommate, Paige. She crushes on Jacob but after she meets Eric, creating the love triangles in the series. Surprisingly, Sasha becomes good friends with Heather and Alison by the end, and her relationship with Jacob is drama-free.
- A highly driven and athletic student, Callie is out to become Canterwood's finest rider with the help of her horse, Black Jack. She is committed to riding. She meets Sasha in the first book and they become instant best friends. However, with love triangles and secrets, they drift apart and Callie hates Sasha. However, in later books, though they agree to keep their personal matters away from riding and aren't as hostile towards each other.
- Heather is a proud, snobbish member of the advanced riding team. Her horse, Aristocrat, is also at ends with Sasha's horse, Charm. As leader of the Trio, she revels in glory, which often puts her at odds with Sasha. Deep down, her personality is driven by hidden personal matters. Heather is naturally good-willed and can tell when people are lying, but her relationship with her parents cause her much pain. At the end, though, she and Sasha agree to work for the better of the team, and become friends. As she matures in age she matures in personality and no longer steals boyfriends, having her own.
- A tough-talking equestrian with formidable skills, Julia is another member of the Trio. She often seeks to be recognized as superior to Heather on the track along with Trix, her bay mare. Julia is falsely accused on cheating on the test and is the blogger in Scandals, Rumors, and Lies. She is expelled from Canterwood after it is revealed she is the anonymous blogger on campus.
- Alison is the third member of the Trio, and also the meekest. She is close friends with Heather, but often feels second-best in terms of skill. She and Sunstruck, her agitated palomino, work well together. Secretly, she possesses more talent than she is aware of, but is hindered by matters of confidence. She is falsely accuses on cheating on a test. She is friends with Sasha and is shocked and hurt by Julia's betrayal.
- Jasmine is an ambitious transfer student who has a bad and competitive history with Heather. She instantly dislikes Sasha and always tries to sabotage both Heather and Sasha while she's at Canterwood. She is expelled for framing Julia and Alison, with her horse Phoenix.
- Brit is a transfer student introduced in Elite Ambition. She is an extremely strong rider, and she and her horse Apollo are an amazing team. Brit comes from a small town, and has a kind personality, just like Sasha. She instantly becomes popular, and Heather and Sasha welcome her with open arms, before she has the chance to start her own clique. But Julia just can't seem to trust her.
- Sasha's first love interest, Jacob dated Callie but likes Sasha. Jacob breaks up with Callie to be with Sasha books after her breakup with Eric. Jacob is a track-runner who has a rivalry with Eric.
- Eric is a the rider of Luna and ex-boyfriend of Sasha. Luna and him work well together, and bond quickly. He dates Sasha for two books, and then breaks up with her when Jacob kisses Sasha and he sees. He currently dates Rachel. Eric is kind and loving, and tries to be nice to Jacob but just doesn't like him.
- Paige is the Manhattan girl host of Teen Cuisine, the hottest show on the kid's food network channel. Paige is gentle, sweet, and kind, but can tell if you're lying or not. She does not ride and is the former roommate of Sasha, as well as being her best friend along with Callie's. She is Ryan's girlfriend.
- Lauren Towers is a superstar rider from Sasha's hometown. Her book, Chosen, is yet to be released. Lauren is the new point of view after Sasha's. She and her horse Whisper are an amazing team. Sasha and Lauren get along well and it is revealed Sasha is her idol.
Burkhart was inspired by a combination of equestrian experience during her youth and a fondness for writing as she grew older. After much of her freelance work was published by numerous magazines, she entered 2006's National Novel Writing Month and completed a first draft of Take the Reins. In January 2007, a literary agent offered to read the story after viewing the author's blog. Burkhart was later signed by the agent, which eventually led to a four-book deal with Simon & Schuster.
While promoting the first novel, Burkhart maintained an online presence throughout 2008, blogging and vlogging with regard to the production of her work and the publishing process. In April, the author reported that photoshoots for her covers had been set in motion. By September, Burkhart had received an advance reader copy of Take the Reins while working on the subsequent novels.
In December, it was announced that an additional four novels would gradually follow the fourth book, Triple Fault. Later in the month, an online video trailer for Take the Reins was released, featuring photos of scenery and the character models. Trailers for other releases followed.
Take the Reins (Book 1)
Sasha Silver arrives on the campus of the elite Canterwood Crest Academy, where she becomes determined to prove that she belongs on the advanced riding team. She is faced with a competitive group of girls known as the Trio, befriends another rider named Callie, and takes a romantic interest in a boy named Jacob.
Chasing Blue (Book 2)
After earning a spot on the school's equestrian team, Sasha discovers that Trio leader Heather has also taken an interest in Jacob, and a new boy crushes on Sasha.
Behind the Bit (Book 3)
Triple Fault (Book 4)
Sasha deals with Callie and Jacob's betrayal. At the same time, a highly competitive new girl arrives.
Best Enemies (Book 5)
The growing competition between Heather and Jasmine rises, with Sasha ending up in the middle, while Jacob is acting strange.
Little White Lies (Book 6)
Sasha is faced with ethical decisions in order to keep several relationships in their current states, after a important secret threatens to destroy all relations.
Rival Revenge (Book 7)
Julian and Alison seek revenge over their falsely accused sentence.
Home Sweet Drama (Book 8)
Sasha is more than ready to become the new Queen Bee, and the competition between Heather and Sasha increases.
City Secrets (Book 9)
Sasha and Heather during a vacation in New York City, while Heather is hiding a secret from Sasha.
Elite Ambition (Book 10)
Sasha has gained success and popularity at Canterwood. However, several personal challenges abound.
Scandals, Rumors, and Lies (Book 11)
An anonymous blogger has begun revealing personal information about several of the main characters.
Unfriendly Competition (Book 12)
A skilled rider from Sasha's hometown arrives at Canterwood, posing a possible challenge to her on and off the course.