Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Book Review: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
Publisher: Scholastic
Publication date: October 2011
Pages: 416
Source: Library
For: Fun (and Printz Project)

Puck Connolly has never want to be in the races - her parents were brutally killed by water horses - but she is compelled to sign up anyway.  Sean Kendrick is the returning champion, so in tune with the vicious horses and his mount in particular he's likely to win easily again.  The two must face off, along with many other contenders, in a race that always ends in bloodshed. 

Things I Liked:
Oh, this book.  (Don't dismiss it based on my horrible summary.)  I'm not sure what I think about this book.  On the one hand, it is, in true Stiefvater fashion, gorgeously written with this lovely prose that seems to drip from the pages like nectar and characters that worm their way into your affections so slowly you don't notice until it's too late.  On the other hand, I couldn't get into it.  It's kind of embarrassing to say that about a book filled with killer sea horses, but there it is.  I struggled to want to keep reading, with the slow plot and the characters I hadn't yet come to love.  I was nearly three-fourths of the way through before I decided that I did like the book, the characters, and the crazy killer water horse story.  And then it ended (in such a nice way, too).  I will admit that I won't soon be forgetting about the cappaill uisce or Sean or Puck.  It boasts a beautiful mythology in the perfect setting - with a creepy undertone and old magic simmering under the surface. 

Things I Didn't Like:
Like I said, I got nearly all the way through before I wanted to keep reading and see what happened.  It was, to be honest, rather dull at the start.  Depending on when you are grabbed by the characters or setting or story, you may love it more or less.  I'd say it's worth the effort of pushing through the beginning to get to the rest.

Um, I can't really think of anything!  Perhaps a bit like Lament and Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater

s-factor: !
some, not a lot

mrg-factor: X
a few dirty jokes, nothing action-wise

v-factor: ->
bloody killer man-eating horses!

Overall rating: ****

What did you think of these killer sea horses?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage


  1. Crap! Im worried about reading this one and this is exactly why. I need a plot. I need to want to read it. Sigh!

    1. There is a plot, it's just slow in coming. You might still want to give it a shot sometimes.

  2. It was a bit slower than many books but I enjoyed it. It was a bit bloody which isn't my favorite but I thought the concept of the dangerous horses from the sea was very interesting!

    1. I know, I loved the concept too! There's nothing quite like it out there :)

  3. I was really excited about this one when it came, but I still haven't gotten around to it. I skimmed the first bit and it really did seem slow, so ... yeah, I haven't picked it back up. I will, I'm sure, but I'm not in a big rush, you know?

    1. Hey, it took me this long to get to it. Definitely I suggest reading it sometime, but it's not a NOW kind of book.

  4. I had a REALLY hard time with this book! Like you said, it's hard to get into it. And I actually did give up, which is rare for me. Now I kind of wish I'd pushed through. I wonder if I would have liked it by the end like you did. Maybe I'll have to go back to it someday.

    1. It might be worth revisiting sometime in the future. But don't feel bad for giving it up - it happens to us all!


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