I read the book because it's a classic. Great for practicing English and any time you metion it, I'm sure you'll find somebody who had read it, too.
First of all it's a very short, only a hundred page novel and the Red Pony does not participate in it for long. The main character is Jody, the ten-year-old son of the ranch owner. The book contains four chapters which are separate stories but inseperable if you look at the meaning as a whole.
Second of all, if you think about the little boy, becoming a man, the book leads you to much less pathos than you'd think. It is very realistic. As, for example Of Mice and Men by Steinbeck. People and nature are shown in the way of people back than could see it. People were close to nature and, for instance, horses were mates and reliable friends.
The young boy, Jody, needs to become a fine man just as his father or the hired hand, Billy Buck. Exciting and cute story, from the 1930's, maybe all of us should learn from Jody's attitude at the end.