Thursday, March 22, 2012

Review: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

Title: The Scorpio Races
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Publisher: Scholastic
Publish Date: October 18, 2011
Source: Library

Why You're Reading This Book:
  • You're a young adult fiction fan.
  • You like mythology.
What's the Story?:

From "It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die.

At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.

Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen."

My Two Cents:

Stiefvater takes a myth of water horses who live in the ocean and like to dine on flesh. For someone like me who is afraid of horses, the thought of a creature like that is simply horrifying and the creatures are definitely scary in the book. The inhabitants of the island surrounded by the water horses participate in the Scorpio Races where the inhabitants try to ride the water horses as long as they can in a race.

Puck Connolly is the first girl to ride in the Scorpio Races. She's strong and seems to realize that rules are often made to be changed or even broken. She's really a fantastic character. She lives with her two brothers. Their father was killed by the water horses. Their mother moved away to the mainland so it's just the Connolly siblings by themselves trying to gain a foothold on the island. This makes Puck even more determined to break convention and race in the Scorpio Races, something that I really appreciated about her. I love a good strong character.

I had read Stiefvater's Shiver trilogy, which takes on the myth of the werewolves. While I liked this series okay, I really feel like The Scorpio Races was more of a break out for the author. The myth is new and fresh for a lot of people (I had never heard of water horses of Irish and Scottish myth before). The author does a really fantastic job of world building in the book. The idea of the water horses is so neatly wrapped in the day to day events of the people of the island that they seem really realistic. I love when an author is able to do that with a really fantastic element! The characters are really well rounded. There are also some really engaging racing scenes that are just fantastic. All these elements really pulled me into the story and gave me something to think about.



  1. Great review! I didn't know this book was about 'water horses'; I assumed from the title that it was about scorpians...maybe giant scorpians! I would really like to read it now- sounds awesome! x

    1. I think the Scorpio part comes from the fact that the water horse race takes place in early November which is the time of the Scorpio horoscope. So glad this book was not about giant scorpions! I would have been scared :P

  2. I haven't read any of Shiefvater's books before. I've been wanting to read the Shiver series. I'm glad you enjoyed the book. I had no idea what it was about.

    1. I liked the Shiver series but I couldn't help myself from thinking about the Twilight books while I was reading them.

  3. Yay! I'm so glad you liked it! I recently bought this ebook and I'm really excited to read it :)

  4. This is a great review, Meg! I am two books into the Shiver series, and while I don't care much for wolves in any book, I find that I am a huge fan of the writing of this author. I have Scorpio Races out from the library right now and hope I can get to it before I have to take it back. I REALLY am having a fit to read this one. It has mixed reviews, but yours is very exciting to me!!!

    1. I liked the Shiver series okay but I didn't really like the characters. I need at least one character to either really love or really hate in order for me to enjoy a book. Books need that kind of passion in some form or another :D

  5. I am older and just starting to read regularly again. This great book made me excited to see how the minds of authors are unbelievably creative.
    Highly recommended Brick NJ maid service website


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