I think I am going to die soon. I can feel the cold shadow of death around me. I'm not sickly, I'm not injured, and I'm doing relatively okay...but still...I feel soon...I don't know exactly when, I think I'm gonna die. I hope not, but like an old man whose lived triple my time I think my time is coming. Think I'll start making peace now.
The novel traces the life and adventures of Black Beauty, a horse in 19th-century England. It opens with Beauty's descriptions of his life as a colt (young horse) in the home of a kind master named Farmer Grey. He runs and plays in the meadow and receives lectures from his mother, Duchess, about the importance of being kind and gentle and never biting or kicking - basically the horse equivalent of an English gentleman.