Study Guide

Heart of a Samurai Chapter 21

By Margi Preus

Chapter 21

Fall Down Seven Times

  • Manjiro decides on a horse race with Tom, the guy who's been riding since he was a kid and whose dad has the fastest horse around.
  • Terry and Job know Manjiro—who still can't stay on a horse—needs help, so they start after-school riding practices immediately.
  • They only have two weeks to teach Manjiro how to ride a horse.
  • Manjiro starts to feel the pressure of the race, too, and he starts to hope that something will happen to him so that he won't need to race Tom.
  • The whole school knows about the race now, so that means Catherine—the girl he met on the first day of school—might see him get humiliated, which would just totally stink.
  • At one of their practices, Manjiro continues to keep falling off of Duffy; on the final fall (into a pile of straw), Manjiro gets up laughing.
  • The other boys aren't laughing—after all, Manjiro keeps falling—but Manjiro just repeats an adage his mother used to tell him: "Fall down seven times, get up eight" (3.21.24).