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The Scorpio Races

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  105,996 ratings  ·  13,823 reviews
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 d
Hardcover, 409 pages
Published October 18th 2011 by Scholastic Press
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Popular Answered Questions
Trisha Perhaps one should check their grammar before one decides to be critical about someone else's writing. …morePerhaps one should check their grammar before one decides to be critical about someone else's writing. (less)
Ada I would say yes. It's a little bit like the Hunger Games, but the characters aren't forced to race; they race because they want to. If I were you, I w…moreI would say yes. It's a little bit like the Hunger Games, but the characters aren't forced to race; they race because they want to. If I were you, I would read it soon! :)(less)

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chai ♡
It is the first day of November and so, today, someone will die.”

With these haunting words laid out like a feast of uncertainty and doom, Maggie Stiefvater launches a new telling of an old tale inspired by elements of Celtic mythology, legends of the water horses, and her own imagination.

And nothing had ever been more beautiful, or fearsome, or bizarre.

So, what's this book about?

Each October, dread settles over the island of Thisby, as The Scorpio sea throws capaill uisce—commonly known as
Maggie Stiefvater
Aug 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: recommended
You know I had to. It IS my favorite of all my books, after all.
Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
”Somewhere close by, a man is moaning; he’s been trampled or thrown or bitten. He sounds resentful or surprised. Did no one tell him that pain lives in this sand, dug in and watered with our blood?”

I really don’t know where I should start with this review because just like any of Maggie’s other books this one wasn’t only magical but also so damn atmospheric that it’s more than just hard to put my feelings into proper words. There is something in the way she writes that always captures the emotio
Also posted on STRANGEMORE.COM.

This is basically the paranormal version of Misty of Chincatigue with (gasp!) romance!

Like Hidalgo, on the beach instead of the desert with (gasp!) kissing! Between two riders! NOT between the horse and it's rider though. Well... sometimes between the horse and it's rider. Just a little.

When this book started, it felt like a breath of fresh sea air, not rife with the smell of YA cliche. That was mainly because I thought this book was told from the alternating persp
Mar 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this book was not what i was expecting. not in the least. i went into this thinking it would simply be an action-packed tale of a daring race; but what i got was so, so much more.

i found myself comforted by a story that showed, in a very special way, that sometimes life is not about what you want, but what you need. with lush and poetic prose (which is so on brand for stiefvater), this story weaves together a foundation of desire, love, and strength in a way that tugs at your heartstrings.

Claudia Ramírez
Mar 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: made-me-cry, 2014
Mary ~Ravager of Tomes~
Sep 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
"This Skarmouth is raw and hungry, striving and unknowable. Everything the race makes me feel on the inside is bleeding up through the seams in the street tonight." - Sean Kendrick

"I wonder how long it will take for me to feel as adult on the inside as I look on the outside." - Puck Connolly


*deep breath*

Sometimes you read a book and it becomes your whole world while you are reading it. For me, The Scorpio Races is one of those books.

I am just forever in debt to Maggie Stiefvater because this b
Caz (littlebookowl)
Feb 26, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: owned, audiobook
3.5/5 stars!

I really liked The Scorpio Races, and I'm glad I listened to it on audiobook. Since there were two voice actors it was very easy to separate Puck and Sean, which was lucky since I've heard that some readers found it very difficult to distinguish between them when reading the book. The narrators also had very different ways of speaking as the characters, which made it impossible to mix the two up while listening.

The writing was beautiful. There is such a rich atmosphere, and the descr
Kai Spellmeier
Apr 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, owned
"It's easy to convince men to love you. All you have to do is be a mountain they have to climb or a poem they don't understand."

Puck has a horse, two brothers and soon no house to call a home. Sean's heart beats for something that he doesn't own. Both have no choice and only one chance to get what they desperately need. It's either win or die.

Why did I not pick this up sooner?
This totally deserves the 5 star rating. My heart goes out to every single tiny detail of this book. But most of all for
Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
They came in with the tide. The moon illuminated long lines of froth as the waves gathered and gathered and gathered offshore, and when they finally broke on the sand, the capaill uisce tumbled onto the shore with them. The horses pulled their heads up with effort, trying to break free from the salt water.

I had to restrain the squealing, fangirly Maja and shove her in the closet so that the adult, critical Maja can sit and write this review. Believe me, it’s better this way.

With The Scorpio Rac
Wendy Darling
Killer water horses + Maggie Stiefvater. What could go wrong?

As it turns out, quite a lot. I feel just terrible writing this, and if you want to know just how much, it actually took me 4 months to make myself finish the book--partly because I wasn't engaged in the story, but also because I could sense that this wasn't going to be good reading experience. After the bruising my heart took with Forever, I really didn't want to write a second negative review for this author. But I'm afraid my disapp
Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘

I reckon the reasons for which The Scorpio Races weaved itself throughout my beloved favorites could cause an opposite reaction to other readers. Do I care, though? No, because every slow-paced page, every heartfelt and beautiful sentence, every haunting and atmospheric landscape, every inch of Sean's bloody-stained jacket and killer horse reminds me that if nothing else, The Scorpio Races has a soul, and I'm consumed by it.

"I am here on firm ground, but part of me is already down on the be
Elle (ellexamines)
It feels like he's confessed that he's dying of a disease I've never heard of, with symptoms I can't see. The utter wrongness of it, the way it won't fit in my head, keeps coming back to me again and again, as if I've only just learned about it.

The Scorpio Races is about man-eating horses, but it's more about finding where you belong. Here, two very different people try to hold onto the things they love most, even as their world spins around them.

Maggie Stiefvater's writing style i
♛ may

Buddy reading this with my queen, Em (rip) my girl, Empress but they both have no chill so I'm going ahead and starting. :)

Maggie Stiefvater has built a world that I want to live in forever.


The Scorpio Races is a slightly mystical, slightly historic, all-around awesome tale narrated by our two main characters, Sean Kendrick and “Puck” Kate Connolly. Every November the Scorpio Races take place which is a race where riders must hold their water horses away from the siren waters long en
Charlotte May
Feb 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, magical-realism
"The water horses are hungry and wicked, vicious and beautiful, hating us and loving us. It is time for the Scorpio races."

I really enjoyed venturing into one of Maggie's earlier books. I loved The Raven Cycle, and although this book is very different from that series, I found it just as fun.

Puck Connelly has lived on Thisby her entire live, she knows the way things are - the harshness of the landscape, and sometimes also the harshness of its inhabitants. When her oldest brother Gabe announces
Nov 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: horse-fans, fans of complex YA

Tarot card reading for this book: inverted Tower. The Tower is leaning into the sea, crumbling, with thrashing waves and stormy skies, and while it can be a card of destruction, it can also be a card of fundamental change--which describes The Scorpio Races down to the letter.
A fierce and hungry book. Even the wind is hungry here, "a live, starving thing." The tomboyish Kate, otherwise known as 'Puck,' and her brothers have been orphaned ever since the carnivorous water horses killed their paren
booksnpenguins (lance orion approved)
I'll never not love this book.


It's the first day of November and so, today,

I'm going to reread this masterpiece.
Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)
3 Stars


“There are moments that you'll remember for the rest of your life and there are moments that you think you'll remember for the rest of your life, and it's not often they turn out to be the same moment.”

Look, no one is more upset about this rating than me. I wanted to love this so much. I recently finished The Raven Cycle, and it became one of my favorite series. I’d heard so many great things about this, I was sure I’d love it.

...But I just feel really underwhelmed?


I s
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
Nov 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
That was a complete and utter gift. I will treasure this book for the rest of my life.
Robin (Bridge Four)
Kindle Daily deal for $1.99 10Sept17

Buddy Read starting Feb 15, 2015 with Brandi, Nicholas, Tandie, Sophie, D G, Athena Shardbearer, Kerry, Mich, AshleyR, Jessica and Michelle at Buddies Books and Baubles

Steve West has one of the sexiest voices ever. What a great time I had listening to this story all over again. Thanks buddy readers for a really fun reread of a story I enjoy.

Original Review:

4.5 Stars

“I didn't know," I start truthfully, "that it was the hard way when I started on it.”

I’ve h
Oct 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Kainat by: Nidofito
“Vices were only vices
when looked at through the frame of society.”

Another remarkable story delivered by Maggie Stiefvater, there is a surprise!

I have a strange relationship with Maggie's characters. I don't just love Ronan Lynch. I love everything that comes with him. I love Chainsaw like it's my pet. I'm protective of his BMW like it's my adopted child. Hell, i even love his boyfriend like i'm his mother. Same goes here: I don't just like Kate and Sean, it's just everything! I'm not sure
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
*** 4.75 ***

A Buddy Read with the MacHalo Freaks, because mythical blood-thirsty Water Horses are awesome!!!

Let me start by saying that very few authors are capable of affecting me emotionally the way Maggie Stiefvater does. Her prose is magic! I am not just spouting words here. Her writing hits somewhere in the vicinity of my soul and I can't get away unscathed. She wounds with her beautiful prose, enchants with her lyrical cadence of melody made of letters, and heals with the hope for salvatio
Mar 01, 2011 marked it as to-read
I am seriously excited for this. As excited as this kitten, in fact.

Lia Carstairs
Aug 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
  "He is slow, and the sea sings to us both, but he returns to me."

My first Maggie Stiefvater book and I was not disappointed.

That last line especially, really got me.🥺❤️

Never thought I could love the capaill uisce given how bloody monstrous they are—I mean, they do love snacking on humans.

Reading about Sean & Corr and Puck & Dove makes me really wish I had that kind of relationship with a horse or better yet actually have a horse .

I've only ridden a horse a few times, but it sound
Tamora Pierce
Nov 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy-ya-yr
On a small island in the Scorpio Sea, men and boys strive to capture the deadly, killer water horses that come onto the land from the ocean. If they can master these mounts, they can ride in the yearly races for honor, glory, and big cash bets. Sean Kendrick races for his father, killed by the same water horse he rides now, and for the horse farm he works for as chief hostler. He has won the Scorpio Races four times and understands the water horses like no one else. Puck Connolly, on the other h ...more
Jul 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: YA Fantasy Fans
Recommended to Arlene by: Street Corner Booker Tour - ARC Flannery
Shelves: arc, ya-fantasy, read-2011
Absolutely fantasical! More please...

First off, a huge thanks to Flannery from thereadventurer who is touring this book with the Street Corner Bookers and allowed me to experience this crazy sauce of a book! Thank you!

Wow! Just wow!! Maggie Stiefvater has definitely cemented her status in the YA genre and Scorpio Races is her full access ticket to the game. I've enjoyed her Mercy Falls trilogy for over a couple of years, but this book has definitely pulled her away from the pack and shown she
Aj the Ravenous Reader

Scorpio Races is such a beautifully written tale, I swear I could cry. In retrospect, I did cry while reading the book. In fact, I’ve experienced a dozen different emotions while reading. The entire story was exciting, intriguing, terrifying, hilarious, romantic, inspiring, fantastical and heartwarming. I adored it.

It’s funny because I was never a fan of Ms. Maggie Stiefvater. I tried reading Shiver but got so bored I didn’t even finish it. I gave her a second chance in Raven Boys and even thou
jv poore
Mar 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult, re-read
Re-Read this over the weekend. I didn't think it would be possible, but I loved it more.
The Scorpio Races is easily the best book I've read all year (out of about 50 so far, give or take). As a lover of all things mythical (vampires, werewolves, faeries; Oh, my!)in addition to being a HUGE Maggie Stiefvater fan, I have been giddy with excitement about the release of this novel. My expectations were high. In typical "Ma
This Review ✍️ Blog 📖 Twitter 🐦 Instagram 📷

“It is the first day of November and so, today, someone will die.”

★ It has been a couple of years since I read a novel by Maggie, I love Maggie’s writing and although it felt a bit different from TRC. I am not an expert when it comes to horses, my experience with these creatures is riding on the back of one when I was young and that’s it. This does not mean I did not enjoy it because I did.

★ I shamefully confess that it took me a couple of
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Time Out Book Club: March Book Club 1 5 Mar 10, 2021 07:16AM  
Puck's Age 12 303 Jun 26, 2019 04:35PM  
Forgotten YA Gems: The Scorpio Races: General Discussion 9 41 Jun 25, 2019 08:46AM  
Challenge Corner: The Scorpio Races, by Maggie Stiefvater - Starting October 9th 2018 13 8 Oct 11, 2018 04:54AM  

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New York Times bestselling author of The Shiver Trilogy, The Raven Cycle, and The Scorpio Races. Artist. Driver of things with wheels. Avid reader.

Maggie Stiefvater plays several musical instruments (most infamously, the bagpipes) and makes art in several media (most generally, colored pencils).

She lives in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia with her husband, their two children, many dogs, a bunch

Articles featuring this book

Whether it’s magic schools, dystopias, paranormal love stories, or contemporary explorations of important real-life issues, young adult books...
251 likes · 174 comments
“I say, 'I will not be your weakness, Sean Kendrick.'
Now he looks at me. He says, very softly, 'It's late for that, Puck.”
“There are moments that you'll remember for the rest of your life and there are moments that you think you'll remember for the rest of your life, and it's not often they turn out to be the same moment.” 835 likes
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