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The Scorpio Races Hardcover – October 18, 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 605 customer reviews

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Product Description
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Shiver and Linger comes a brand new, heart-stopping novel.

With her trademark lyricism, Maggie Stiefvater turns to a new world, where a pair are swept up in a daring, dangerous race across a cliff--with more than just their lives at stake should they lose.


* “[A] taut, chilling, romantic adventure....Masterful. Like nothing else out there now.” – Kirkus Reviews, starred review

* “Stiefvater masterfully combines an intimate voice (think I Capture the Castle) with a fully evoked island setting with sensory-rich language (think Margo Lanagan) with a wealth of horse detail with a plot full of danger, intrigue, and romance. ... Stiefvater sets not one foot wrong as she takes readers on an intoxicating ride of their own. ... Stiefvater’s novel begins rivetingly and gets better and better…all the way, in fact, to best.” – The Horn Book, starred review

* “A book appealing to lovers of fantasy, horse stories, romance, and action-adventure alike, this seems to have a shot at being a YA blockbuster.” – Booklist, starred review

* “An utterly compelling read.” – Publishers Weekly, starred review

"[A] thrilling book that’s as unusual as it is alluring." — The Los Angeles Times

* "While there is plenty of action, conflict, excitement, and a heart-stopping climax, it is the slowly developing relationship between Kate and Sean that makes the book remarkable." — School Library Journal, starred review

"In her most addictive story yet, Stiefvater revives the strong, silent type in sexy, brooding monster tamer Sean Kendrick. His co-narrator, Puck, is heartbreakingly adorable as a stubborn little sister growing into a brave, self-assured woman. Stiefvater is a master of magical realism, and her prose leaves the reader cold, damp and anxious as November closes in on the isolated island setting." — RT Book Reviews Magazine

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press; First Edition edition (October 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 054522490X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0545224901
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (605 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #270,972 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Hello. After a tumultuous past as a history major, calligraphy instructor, wedding musician, technical editor, and equestrian artist, I'm now a full-time writer living in the middle of nowhere, Virginia, with my charmingly straight-laced husband, two kids, four neurotic dogs who fart recreationally, and a 1973 Camaro named Loki.

I'm also an award-winning colored pencil artist, play several musical instruments (most infamously, the bagpipes), and recently acquired a race car.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

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#70 in Books > Teens
#70 in Books > Teens

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Maggie Stiefvater's The Scorpio Races takes readers to the small island of Thisby, a place where nothing is earned easily, whether it be money or respect. Sean Kendrick has found that out himself, scraping by as a stable worker. He's no ordinary stable hand, however, since he is the only one able to truly control the fearsome capaill uisce, the carnivorous water horses that emerge from the sea. Each year, Sean races his beloved water horse, Corr, in the potentially deadly Scorpio Races. Despite the odds in his favor, there's much more at stake in this year's race. Puck Connolly, on the other hand, never meant to go near the Scorpio Races, but her own hard luck has changed that. As the two navigate the difficult paths given to them, they must decide which risks are worth taking.

THE SCORPIO RACES stands out as Stiefvater's most well-written book to date. Her writing remains beautiful and evocative, and it does so this time without ever feeling overdone. She constructs a palpable sense of mood and place using her words, and the characters have authentic personalities and motivations based on what's shared about their pasts. Certain emotional and haunting scenes have stayed with me long after I finished, and I got goosebumps while reading more times than I could count. As a standalone novel, the story was satisfying and complete in itself, and the aching closing scene had me thinking about it for days. Other strong points of the novel included its unique water horse mythology (which was explained well without too much telling) and the focus on the strengths of Sean and Puck and the meaningful relationship each had with his or her horse.
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Format: Hardcover
Maggie Stiefvater has already mastered faeries and werewolves. But in "The Scorpio Races," she turns her sights to a more obscure supernatural creature -- deadly Celtic water-horses -- and wraps them in a story of blood, sea mist and windswept beaches. While the story itself is rather slow to unfold, it gives Stiefvater lots of time to flesh out her teen riders.

On a small Irish island, there is a special race every November. Many men and boys ride the capaill uisce (pronounced "copple ooshka") -- the swift, beautiful, bloodthirsty water horses, which want to either drown their riders or eat their flesh. They often succeed.

Puck is the first girl to ever enter the race, but terrible memories make her reluctant to accept a capall uisce, so she decides to ride her land mare, Dove. If she doesn't win, she and her brothers will lose their home. Sean Kendrick is a boy with a special knack with the capaill uisce. He catches, trains and sometimes kills the water horses, and no one knows their ways better than he does.

But as the race approaches, both the young riders are confronted by terrible problems -- the entire village is opposed to Puck racing, and Sean clashes with his cold, cruel employer over a prize stallion. And even as Sean and Puck grow closer, they begin to fall in love... but only one of them can possibly win the race.

"The Scorpio Races" is a story rich with Irish atmosphere -- salt spray, grey stones, ancient rituals and a tradition reaching back further than memory. And unlike most teen fantasies, this one doesn't have supernatural creatures who look like sexy teenage boys -- the capaill uisce are violent, wild beasts who crave blood and the sea, evoking both terror and awe.
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Format: Hardcover
This is the story of a girl named Puck who lives on an island with her two brothers. Their parents were killed by these terrible "water horses" (fantasy horses who live in the sea and are ravenous), and so Puck and her two brothers are left to try to survive on their own. When Puck decides that she must ride in the Scorpio Races, she has no idea what she has signed up for. Cut-throat competitors, male chauvinistic pigs, and surprise ally.

The Scorpio Races was unlike anything I've read all year. Not only in terms of the story but mostly in the way that it was written. Maggie Stiefvater has a way with words. Her beautiful prose and luxurious writing style are second to none. If you've read Shiver, then you know what I'm talking about. The Scorpio Races' writing was so refined and so exquisite and yet, I don't think that many people will enjoy this read as much as I did. And it saddens me to say that because I really did love this book.

This book is not one for someone who is looking for a great love story where the characters are made for each other; where they pine for each other throughout the entire book. It is not an angsty read and if you're looking for a "romance novel", this is not it. It IS, however, a wonderful journey and although it may start out rather slow and confusing, once you're aware of what is going on you'll be dying to find out how it all ends.

I think I would recommend this for older YA readers, just because the characters are a little bit older and mature. It might be hard for a 12 year old to connect to the story. Also, it's hard to say "if you liked this book, then you might like The Scorpio Races" so instead I'll say if you're looking for a good story and aren't looking for romance, then you'd enjoy this one.
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