Title: The Scorpio Races
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Published: 22nd October 2011
Source: Local Library
Rating: 4/5 anythings
Every year, the Scorpio Races are run on the beaches of Skarmouth. Every year, the sea washes blood from the sand. To race the savage water horses can mean death, but the danger is irresistible.
When Puck enters the races to save her family, she is drawn to the mysterious Sean, the only person on the island capable of taming the beasts.
I cannot believe I just rated this book a 4 rating. Throughout the book I kept complaining and complaining and COMPLAINING, how it took me forever for me to read and how I just didn’t connect with it but the last few hundred pages or so changed my mind and with that I changed my 3 rating to a 4. It was so close… SO CLOSE to achieving the coveted 5 rating from me. I think it was just a matter of a few mm to reaching that 5 rating.
Okay let us start with the review.
The first problem I had with this book was the character Puck AKA Kate Connolly. I really could not relate nor understand nor empathize with her for 80% of the book that is about 380 pages of reading give or take. At first, when Puck joins the races it was to stop her brother from going away. That in itself is a good reason to make her desperate but the part which annoyed me was when she says that she loves Dove, her horse, so much yet she is willing to risk her horse for something she might not win and still lose her brother to the mainland anyway. So I did not understand her rationale. She herself admits that the Capall uisce killed both her parents and that they are monsters with a very healthy appetite for blood and meat (of any variety) so why endanger your horse? I mean her I don’t really care but the horse. Which of course then, Malvern owner of a stable yard (something) comes along at the opportune moment to announce that if the house isn’t paid they will be evicted of which said brother, Gabe, knew about but didn’t bother to even tell his siblings even when he will be moving to the mainland. Douche move? Yes… Yes it is. Again aside from that I really couldn’t connect with Puck something about her annoys me. For some reason I feel she is idiotic in a way of which I can’t put my finger on. Maybe because she didn’t fully realize what she got herself into or maybe she was interested in the brooding, mysterious, quiet guy who has a knack for horses which of course is our other protagonist, Sean Kendrick. Anyhoots, it’s something but I can’t pinpoint the problem.
Next problem I have is the pacing of the book. It is sooooooooo SOOOOOOOO slow. I felt like I was reading a bunch of nothings the first 40% of the book. It details, Puck and Seans preparation and their daily lives but it is like nothing of consequence actually happens at least not in Pucks POV. In Seans POV a lot of stuff happened which is far more interesting than Pucks POV. I swear I was so close to DNF-ing this book had it not been for Sean and Corr. I mean I understand that sometimes in books, the slow pacing works, I mean Drood by Dan Simmons is like that. The pacing is so slow yet it is still interesting to read even if your own reading pace slows down. YOU ACTUALLY WANT TO READ IT not feel like you are going crazy trying to finish a book which only had 481 pages.
Another problem I had was how the deaths caused by the Capall uisce were treated as some side note. I mean those horses killed a lot of people yet the people on the island, Thisby, doesn’t even show any type of sadness. I only saw said grief when it was Tommy Falk. I mean yeah this stuff happens every year but seriously none of them showed any type of sadness? Guilt? Grief? Are their hearts carved from stone?
Okay! That aside I now shall talk about what I did like about the book. I loved. Absolutely adored Seans POV and Corr. I think out of all the characters my favorite character was Corr. I found it so endearing how he is this killer (no pun intended) beast and how he can kill a man in less than a minute yet is also the same horse that is beyond willing to look like an idiot for a mare that he fancies. In my head he even has a voice when trying to impress Dove, he is all ‘Heeyyy babe. Lookin mighty fine todayyyyy’. Corr seemed so silly when around Dove.
The reason why I liked Seans perspective is that it has a certain depth to how he narrates his version of the story. His POV is more entertaining to read rather than Puck because in my mind he seems to know what he is doing and he knows what he wants and also how he treats Corr. He would rather die than allowing Corr to be endangered.
I started to change my mind right after I hit 380 ish pages about Puck. Finally and I do mean FINALLY, I warmed up to her and her plight and how she just wants to save her house. She isn’t trying to prove anything, she just wants to save her family home and her little brothers innocence. Also, I think this is also around the time that the two protagonists actually interact with each other and I like the dynamic they have with each other. It isn’t all hot romance. They just enjoyed each other’s company.
Another interaction that made me change the rating was the bromance that Sean and Corr have. When Sean was injured during the race, Corr could have easily mauled him and trotted majestically into the ocean yet he didn’t. When it was revealed that Corr was injured and he can never run again and Sean wanted to free him and Corr did not go to the ocean and instead went back to Sean. I cried man. I cried. This horse who loves the ocean so much he can go cray decided if Sean couldn’t come with him to the ocean then he too will not go into the ocean. If that is not bromance I do not know what is.
So in the end this book was a good book after all you just had to keep strong and plough on for the first 380 pages. I have realized that maybe Maggie Stiefvater books just isn’t for me. I mean I read Linger when I was younger I was so annoyed and aggravated by it I DNF-ed the book and gave it away. I was so over the whole being obsessed with your other half trend back then.
Wow I just realized this review is LONG! For you who have managed reading till the end I APPLAUD YOU! and you deserve a high five and a pat on the back! HIGH FIVE! *pats back*