The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

The water horses are hungry and wicked, vicious and beautiful, hating us and loving us.

It is time for the Scorpio Races.

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater wasn’t a book I was initially interested in. I was not a fan of the Shiver series, so I figured I’d just be passing this one by as well. Then I saw Melissa at i swim for ocean’s review saying that she wasn’t a Shiver fan either – but loved this book. I thought hmm. Then Holly at Book Harbinger and Angie at Angieville both gave it rave reviews which pretty much guaranteed that I’d be reading it. So – was it worth picking up? Well…

YES! Thank goodness I have such great taste in blogging friends, right? Without them I’d have passed The Scorpio Races by. And I’d have been missing out on a lot.

The island becomes a living breathing thing – perhaps the strongest of the characters. I felt pulled into the magic of the capall uisce, the deadly horses from the sea. They were always both terrifying and mesmerizing, which is, I imagine, exactly how the characters in the book felt about them as well. It was the island that made the entire book feel real. Because I was so immersed into this place, Sean, Puck and everyone around them became real as well. I tasted the November cakes (I really really want one for real y’all, I may have to make that happen. Angie posted the recipe.), I both felt the punishing winds and tasted the salt they carried with them…reading this book was a very sensory experience.

Also – while there are no sexytimes, there was amazing breathless tension. The progression of Sean & Puck’s relationship was very slow and subtle, a definite rarity these days. They rode a horse together and I think it was one of the sexiest scenes I’ve ever read. No romantic physical contact whatsoever and still – wowza. When an author can bring you so fully into a world and connect you in such a real way to the people inside it, it is definitely time to be impressed. Maggie Stiefvater has definitely impressed me in a big way.

The relationship between Sean and his horse, Corr, was also brilliantly handled. Incredibly complex and layered. Getting through all the tangled emotions in the book made that ending incredibly stirring. I will be incredibly sad to leave Sean, Puck and Corr behind. (In fact, I’m writing this review about five days after finishing  the book and I am still feeling the loss.)

Whether or not you’ve loved Maggie Stiefvater’s books in the past doesn’t matter you guys, trust me. Don’t pass on the chance to experience this one! It now has a nice comfortable spot on my all-time favorites list.

Check out The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater on Goodreads / Amazon

{ 8 comments… add one }
  • Holly November 2, 2011, 11:27 pm

    HOO-RAY! You liked it. This makes my day. 😀

    OH. The horse scene. Wowza. 🙂 I loved it. Tension is right. Just thinking about Sean and Corr almost makes me tear up. Authentic and stirring indeed. I hope more people pick it up.
    Holly recently posted..Happy Belated Halloween!My Profile

  • Alison November 3, 2011, 12:25 am

    I finished Scorpio Races the other day. It was a very slow book and it took me a long time to appreciate it. But when I made time for it in my mind, the subtle beauty blew me away. It reminded me of Melina Marchetta’s Jellicoe Road by its somewhat difficult beginning but very fulfilling end.
    Alison recently posted..AlisonCanRead: On the blog: Guest Post: Jenni Elyse – My Twilight Story Profile

  • Giselle November 3, 2011, 5:00 am

    Wonderful review! I’ve been seeing very mixed opinions on this one but I’m still curious enough to want to read it and judge for myself. You make me look forward to it 🙂

    Xpresso Reads

  • April Books & Wine November 3, 2011, 7:26 am

    Okay, you, Angie, and Holly are like my trifecta of book recommendations. I NEED TO READ THIS. I just keep telling myself I will read it in 2012.

    Seriously, the sexytimes without sexytimes horse riding scene? DING DING my book-i-need-to-read-radar is going off!
    April Books & Wine recently posted..Lovestruck Summer by Melissa C. Walker Book ReviewMy Profile

  • cecilia November 5, 2011, 9:45 am

    Just finished this book – and your review made me pause a bit. You are so totally right – no sexytimes whatsoever! – but the tension WAS breathless between Puck and Sean. Which is very much more sexy than anything more blatant.

    The Scorpio Race was not what I expected (note: I haven’t read Shiver series), but it had this epic feel that I liked and a wholly unique story. I loved reading Maggie Stiefvater’s afterword about how she came to write this story.
    cecilia recently posted..BkRv :: Love lifts us up where we belongMy Profile

    • Allison (AllureofBooks) November 5, 2011, 9:49 am

      I loved the author’s note at the end too! Really interesting to see how long the journey to writing this one was for her…


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