Available now (Oct. 2011)
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Review copy purchased
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.
Positive: The imagery. Maggie Stiefvater certainly has a way with words. She plays with the language, a delicate instrument wielded by a master musician. As I read, I could hear the sounds of the island, of the horses pounding upon the sandy beach, and of the love growing between Puck and Sean.
Positive: The island world. Such an isolated place, it was impossible to tell when exactly this story took place. I actually envisioned it to be set back in the 50’s, for some reason. There was little in the way of technology and even when the mainland was talked about, there was no mention of cell phones or computers or other modern technology. I’d love to visit its craggy beauty.
Positive: The characters. With shifting points of view, the story allowed us to see through both Sean’s and Puck’s eyes. I really enjoyed the spirit of both characters and seeing their love of the island, the horses, and each other. A taciturn horse whisperer, Sean truly had his world rocked by Puck and her plucky, sassy, stubborn-as-all-get-out self.
Wish: That there were truly magical water horses in our world. Gorgeous and deadly, the capaill uisce are amazing creatures.
Overall: Beautifully wrought, THE SCORPIO RACES is a story to be savored one magical note at a time.
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