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Sentences that knock you out of what you are reading....
"She was like a maturing young colt,..." Oh? Developing strong lines, good muscles, and is hung like a... well a colt? The rest of the description makes it clear that she was developing into a beautiful young woman, throwing off the awkwardness of the teenage years. But comparing a maturing teenage girl to a "colt" didn't sit well with me.

Perhaps the author didn't was to compare her to a maturing filly, or didn't realize that colts are young male horses.

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Dude. That's just wrong.

I remembered reading "coltish" as a description of girls before (various books; translated in my head as loose-limbed/gawky), so I looked it up. Answers.com has as definitions
colt 2, A youthful or inexperienced person; a novice (looks like that's from the American Heritage dictionary).
coltish 2, Lively and playful; frisky.

http://www.answers.com/topic/laura-dern "Tall, blonde, blue-eyed, and slender, Dern moves with a coltish combination of grace and gangliness that she uses to make herself alternately plain or beautiful, innocent or seductive, as her roles require."

"Coltish" is frequently used for girls; I don't think I've ever heard it applied to a boy.

You do get those who use "colt" as a gender-neutral term for a young equine.

When I think of a colt I think of angular, with long thin legs and body. When I was 12 this is what I looked like before "filling in". For me it was the first step into the awkward teenage phase. So no I would not have used this description for an older more mature teenager. But for a tween girl it could work.

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