Review: The Scorpio Races

Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Date of Publication: October 18, 2011
Pages: 404
Source: Personal copy
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.

The Scorpio Races is an utterly enchanting read. I absolutely adored everything about it. Maggie Stiefvater is one of my favorite authors for a reason, and The Scorpio Races is my favourite book by her yet.

First off, it's a book by Maggie Stiefvater so you always have to expect beautiful writing. Her writing is vaguely poetic, but I don't feel like it's too descriptive. It's more emotional. I love the way she uses her words; they're all sensory and moody. They all paint the setting fabulously. The concept itself makes this book completely original. The water horses were written about perfectly. She didn't try to hype them up too much or make them too unnatural. The story wasn't even really about them. They were an integral part of the story but not the main story line. This made the book feel very contemporary-ish as it focused more on the characters themselves than the magic in the world.

The reason I enjoyed this book so much was definitely because of the unique characters. The characters felt very real and well rounded. You could really sense their personalities. Because of this, I found it so easy to support them and to relate with them, and eventually to care about them. That's all you can really ask for when it comes to characters.

I loved Puck- her bravery, when she acted childish, when she acted mature, the way she cared about her brothers, pretty much everything. Her family story intrigued me but it was her personality that won me over. She could be confident and arrogant, or she could be vulnerable and betrayed.

Sean Kendrick. Wow. He's something special, which is first evident from his very memorable name. Sean is mysterious, and it's almost impossible to describe him adequately. He commands respect, and he cares wholeheartedly for Corr. The kind of passion he had about racing, it's something I've always admired in general. I've always been fascinated by driven, passionate people and Sean's about as driven as they come.

There were great supporting characters too that fit in well with the story. Thisby is a remote island and that kind of small town vibe isn't something I've ever experienced. I enjoyed reading about the island fashions and characters.

The Scorpio Races was simply a pleasure to read. It's unbelievably atmospheric and something about it never left me bored. There isn't much real action, although there is plenty of inner conflict and character development. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was perfect for me and I definitely recommend you try it if it sounds like your type of read.



  1. TOTALLY. AGREE. Maggie Stiefvater is a magician when it comes to setting, characters, and prose. The only arena we really think she could improve in is pacing... but you know what? We can deal. ;P

    1. I agree with you guys too. The more I read books by her, the more I enjoy them.


  2. I had so much trouble with the writing-it was just too atmospheric with not enough action for my taste. The Raven Boys was a much better read for me!

    1. I loved this book too, but I have to agree, The Raven Boys was even better. I think I have a review for that- I need to find it and post it!



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