Friday, April 12, 2013
The Scorpio Races
by Maggie Stiefvater
Published: 10.18.11
Pages: 404

Some race to win. Others race to survive. 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 choice. So she enters the competition - the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen. 
Inky's Blurbings:
First, it must be said that I read this over 5 months ago. So now that I'm finally writing my thoughts down to the best of my memory. Second, I've noticed that this book is very highly loved. It has a 4.08 rating on Goodreads and all the reviews I've seen are either LOVE LOVE LOVE or GAG GAG GAG. Sadly, I'm gonna have to go with the latter. 

I'd heard only the best of this book. I loved the premise and I really wanted to give Maggie another shot after I couldn't even get into her former book Shiver. [There will never be a review of that book since I don't think I got to page 30..] Anyway, so I got the book and I picked it up, read two pages and put it down. One day later, I repeated the process. And so on. I got a little farther each time but it took me about 5 or 6 tries before I finally pushed myself to get past the first few chapters and finish the book. And while it was okay, my main problem was that it bored me it death. 

Let's start with the characters. Puck and Sean. Our dual narrators, both entrants for the Death race on the beach with Human-Eating Horses. Oh yeah, it's a crazy dangerous game. Now Puck, is entering because she needs the reward. Of course, a girl in the race is an anomaly so she gets quite a bit of mockery and hatred. However she felt really chill about all the reaction. I couldn't seem to get ANY emotion from her. Hints at different feelings, but there was nothing that was bold and stood out about her. She doesn't live on in my mind as a girl who took lots of action, who felt. She's just a name. A flat character lump that's as dead as a doornail. Sure. I felt a teensy bit of sympathy for her being in the same family as her jerk of a brother, but everything else was just...well, flat. 

Sean was the same for me as well. I felt like their brains were just...POETIC MUSH. There was nothing that connected me to them. NOTHING that made me want to keep reading. NOTHING that riveted me. Sure they had decent actions, but it was all just there. Words on a page. Not a story for me. And the romance..what the heck? You call that a romance? Because I. Don't. See. One. Anywhere. It was just a lump.  These characters were just THERE. A mold. A nameless face. A faceless statue. A big fat bowl of nothing. 

And that's not even the plot and storyline. Sure Maggie has beautiful and poetic writing at times, and we've got these awesome horses and characters to build up, but do you really need 300 freaking pages for the whole thing?! It's sooooo looooong. It feels like NOTHING happens. It takes forever to get through the process of signing up and getting the horses and YAH-BLAH-BLAH-BLAH--*cough*--GAG. We were getting nowhere! How much character development and internal conflict do you want to shove down our throats before we get to the good stuff? 

The horses [aka the good stuff] are in the book periodically but the actual race and WHOLE POINT OF THE STORY don't actually happen till the very end. And I mean end. And then it's BOOM. Story over. Yeah that was a good waste of my time. I came for this new look on the Kentucky Derby. Except instead it's a Deadly Derby. And seriously, the horses were fascinating! I loved learning about them. They were vicious, original and they come from the sea! It's like a mer-horse....of sorts. Let's not even go there. Point is, they were the most original and interesting part of the story for me. Poor little Puck and Sean. Showed up by a horse. Yeee-haaaaw. {yeah I really can't remember their fancy name.}

So I've decided that Maggie's books are not for me. Sadly. This is my second failed attempt to like her books and I don't think Raven Boys will do it for me either. I'm sad that I didn't like this one more, but so much for that I guess. Anyway. Now that I've gotten those negative thoughts out of my system...I'm gonna go read a better book.

Content: Mild
[Language and innuendo - can't remember specifics]
1.5 Stars

So, this book is dead and gone to me. What about you? Did you like it better? Do you agree? I'd love to hear what you think!


  1. Oh no! I'm so sad to hear that you despised this book. I actually really enjoyed Maggie's Shiver series, so I consider myself a Maggie fan. I'm quite shocked at how flat these characters were! And the plot pacing doesn't seem like it's done very well. But the concept sounds so cool, I don't think I can pass it up. I think I'm still going to read this one, but with caution. Thanks for the honest and well-written review, Hannah! :)

    1. Thanks Jen! I hope you can enjoy this book a lot more than I did!

    2. HINKY I love you so much right now. We agree on the same points!! :D I agree the characters were just completely flat and boring and I didn't even manage to finish it because I got so bored because the plot was going nowhere!

      Fantastic review I'm sorry you couldn't enjoy this one as much as some other people did :)

    3. YESS. Awesome points for not liking this one too!

  2. I've loved all of Maggie Stiefvater's books so it's a shame that you didn't enjoy this one. This is the only book of hers that I haven't yet read so I think I'll shove it a little further down my TBR pile now that I've seen your review.
    I can see why some people might not like them because they're written in a way unlike anything else.


    1. I'm glad you enjoyed her books! I'm sure you'll like this one! Haha it's not just the writing for me but more the whole feel of the characters. I'm sure if I wasn't a picky book nerd I'd have like this one more. :P

  3. I haven't read any of Maggie Stiefvater's books but that's too bad you haven't enjoyed them.... :( I do have a copy of Raven Boys. Hopefully, it'll be good.

    Thanks for the great and entertaining review, Hannah!

    1. Thanks Stephanie!! I hope you like it better.

  4. It seems like Stiefvater might not be an author you connect with but I think you did a great job of outlining why this book didn't work for you. I agree in that I didn't find it as compelling as you might think dangerous water horses would make a book; I did love The Raven Boys but I still don't think it would work for you.

    1. Thank you so much Booky! (May I call you that? ;) Negative reviews are hard to do without ranting sometime so I'm glad you liked it!! I'm glad you her books better! I know I'm in the minority here.

  5. AWESOME REVIEW INKYKINS!! Seriously. You said it perfectly. This is exactly how I felt about it 100%. I have decided that Stiefvater and I don't click. I thought Shiver was okay, I hated this book, and then I didn't even finish The Raven Boys. Siiiigh. And this book had so much freaking potential! I want one of those horses. ARgh.

    1. ASHEYBABY!! Thank you! Guess we'll just have to make other books popular while everyone else is fawning over the Raven books. :)

  6. And...I haven't read this one. But I'm reading something similar right now. Just can't get into it-- borringggg. LOL. On another note, GO INKSS!! You're a hipster!! Woohooo! ;D

    Puck and Sean sound like terrible characters! I hate when they become random words on a page-- so not worth it. Lovely review Inky-- I wish that you had liked this one more. Cheerss! ;D

  7. Too bad about the flat characters. It's hard when you hear so many good things about a book. I haven't read this one yet. I do love poetic writing, but it has to have substance. Thanks for the review.

  8. BAHAHA. 'A big fat bowl of nothing.' Lmao! I'm sad you didn't enjoy this one more, it's really a shame! But for once, I am not the black sheep ;p *Black sheep Nator twin fist bump*
    I think the only reason I enjoyed this one so much was because I listened to the audio and the narrators were awesome. Because they were speaking (and good at it), I didn't miss out on the emotion part, and it made it less boring.
    But I was a bit disappointed that the actual race was so short, so I totally get that. The water horses were by far the best part! I loved Corr. :)

    This review made me giggle, even though I liked the book! Now go read something better, Inkinator!

    I am your Nator Twin ;D

  9. I love that you're so passionate about your books! I don't think I would have finished the book if I felt the way you do so good job in finishing. :) I'm like Jessi and listened to most of it and enjoyed it. The narrators did a good job. I guess I didn't love it enough to make it a priority to finish listening after it was due back at the library though. ;) I was prob 3/4 done with it.
    Clean Teen Fiction
    Clean Adult Fiction

  10. Oh god, I'm so glad I'm not the only one that DNF'd this one.. It was super dull.. I just didn't even bother after a while either. I'm so proud of you for powering through and finishing it though. I didn't have any patience myself..
    Giselle @ Book Nerd Canada


Heyo! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! I love to hear from my awesome-sauce blog readers. You just made my day! I try to reply to every comment I get so if you have a question check back later! Or just link me up to your blog (if you have one) and I'll visit you! Have a Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious day! <333 Inky

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