Saturday, December 17, 2011

#BIR2011: THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater - Review and giveaway

Welcome to the last day of BIR2011! We may be at the end of our week long tribute to our favorite books of this year, but there is still a lot going on today, so make sure you check out the Best I've Read blog for our double feature of Delirium by Lauren Oliver and The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. And don't forget about all of the other blogs participating. They all have a featured author/book for today. You can find the schedule HERE. So many great books/authors/giveaways involved in BIR2011. As a special treat, come back to the BIR2011 blog on Monday for an epic giveaway.

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
Released on October 18, 2011
Published by Scholastic Press

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. (from Goodreads)

Maggie Stiefvater is widely known for her Wolves of Mercy Falls series. And that is one of my favorite series of books. I loved this book even more.
The Scorpio Races is not your typical YA Novel. It is steeply based in myth, and although fictional, there are flavors of real cultural myths.
Every October, the capall usice (pronounced CAPple ISHka) make their way to shore out of the depths of the ocean. They are hungry for blood.
And every year, the men on the island, in typical testosterone form, catch/buy/train these water horses for the November Scorpio Races. There can only be one winner, and many lose their lives.
Sean Kendrick has won the past four Scorpio Races. A quiet boy with one foot on the land and one in the ocean, Sean has an affinity for all horses, especially the capall usice. He is the one that everyone else turns to when there is trouble with the water horses.
Puck Connolly is an outspoken girl trying to keep her family together after the death of her parents by the capall usice the year before. While times are hard, and food is meager, she pushes on and does the best she can for her and her brothers.
Puck, although very connected to her own  horse, has never been interested in the capall usice, or the Scorpio Races.
Until she finds herself the first female in the history of the races to participate.

This is one of the most beautifully written books I have read. The imagery conveyed in Stiefvater's words brings about a beautiful, harsh world. The personalities and traits of the characters brings them to life and puts the reader right there in the story with them. I couldn't help but feel connected, and empathetic with Sean, Puck, and the remains of the Connolly family, as well as those they interact with on a daily basis.
 Being the atypical YA Novel, people might want to shy away from it. Those that do are sorely missing out. There is something for everyone in this book: action, adventure, suspense and a romance of heart-melting proportions. 

About the author: All of Maggie Stiefvater's life decisions have been based around her inability to be gainfully employed. Talking to yourself, staring into space, and coming to work in your pajamas are frowned upon when you're a waitress, calligraphy instructor, or technical editor (all of which she's tried), but are highly prized traits in novelists and artists. She's made her living as one or the other since she was 22. She now lives an eccentric life in the middle of nowhere, Virginia with her charmingly straight-laced husband, two kids, two neurotic dogs, and a 1973 Camaro named Loki. 

Maggie can be found on Goodreads, Facebook, and


* * * Giveaway* * *

We have two copies of The Scorpio Races available to giveaway. 
US only and no P.O. Boxes, please. 
Just fill out this form:


  1. I've been hearing wonderful things about this book and author! I'd love to read this one!

    Thank you for the giveaway chance!

    Happy Holidays!

    Gena Robertson

  2. I loved this book, the fact that it's atypical is a draw for me as I don't read much YA.

  3. I really want to read this. It is such a great book! Thanks for the giveaway.

  4. Thank you for the giveaway opportunity. I love the Mercy Falls books and this one sounds good too.

  5. I too have heard such great things about this book. Thanks for all the great giveaways!

  6. I've been wanting to read this! Thanks for the chance to win!

  7. Can't wait to read this one! Thanks for the great giveaway!

  8. This book is perfect for reluctant male readers because it grips you from the first page. There aren’t really any “down moments,” nor is there too much fluff. It will appeal to female teens as well because of the strong female lead…she’s a lot like Katniss but less abrasive!
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