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BTW - I hope these satisfy your requirements - I'm afraid, being a Brit, I'm not entirely sure what is meant by 'chapter books' (books with chapters?)
Afraid to Ride by C.W. Anderson (his other books are good, too, but some might be a bit young -- don't know how old your girls are. There is a whole series about Billy and Blaze that I remember reading in 1st or 2nd grade)
Misty of Chincoteague and pretty much anything else by Marguerite Henry.
#2-I agree, broke my heart too!
Some not yet mentioned:
Runaway Radish by Jessie Haas. She's written quite a few others as well.
Runaway Racehorse by Ron Roy is part of the popular A to Z mystery stories and he adored it. And now is reading the entire series.
Likewise there is a Boxcar Children book called The Mystery Horse
The Big Apple Barn #1 books
We also spent quite a bit of time reading stories of real racehorses over the past 6 months that were about at the same level but non-fiction -- I Rode the Red Horse, which is about Secretariat, and Assault: The Crippled Champion were his favorites.
To deprive your children of reading this book because you think it is to emotional, is to deprive them of the core essence of what a book truly is. You will also be depriving them of historical meaning because this book is great on many levels. First...it is a book on animal abuse. Second...it is a book that a woman wrote. Third...this book changed many peoples perceptions about animal abuse in an age when horses were just a commodity and women's opinions about things were mostly ignored.
I know you did not come out and say you were not going to let your children read Black Beauty, but look past the story itself to the history and purpose of the book itself...this book could lead to many home schooled history lessons!
Beware the Mare and its sequels are a bit uncommon, but they're right about 100 pages, which is the length in the OP. They're light, fast reads, but I enjoyed them.
The Thoroughbred and Thoroughbred Ashleigh series by Joanna Campbell are about families living on breeding and racing horse farms. They aren't too long individually, but there are tons of them (LT lists 125 works for Thoroughbred). If your girls like them, they'll be occupied for a long time.
The Heartland series by Lauren Brooke is another one about living on a horse farm, though I only read a few of these ones.
The First Horse I See also stands out in my mind. I remember the girl in that one also dealing with coming-of-age issues, more so than in the others I listed, although they all touch on them to some degree--Heartland also has a good amount of this.
One of my favorite authors ever is Mary O'Hara for My Friend Flicka and its sequels. My Friend Flicka is also available as a recorded book...wonderful for a long car ride, which is how we listened to it as a family. It is an incredible story, and definitely not just for children or horse lovers!