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.
The only books I’ve read by Maggie Stiefvater are her Shiver series. While I thought the writing was beautiful and it left an impact, I still wasn’t sure about the whole paranormal romance aspect of the book series. That’s why I was intrigued by this novel because it sounded completely different. Yes, there’s still mythology involved, but it was completely different than anything I’d heard of before. The idea of racing water horses is so unique (and very Maggie Stiefvater).
I listened to this book on audio and it was an amazing way of experiencing this book. There was a different voice actor for each of the two main characters, Sean and Puck, and both of them were so talented and interesting to listen to. I’ve heard that sometimes while reading the novel, it’s hard to keep track of who is speaking, but that’s not a problem while listening to the audiobook.
The plot of this book is really good. While there’s a lot of things that happen to Sean and Puck, and the whole book leads up to this climactic race, the book is about a lot more than that. It’s about staying true to who you are and what you believe in. It’s about love and trust, and the book also has an undercurrent of feminism running throughout. Puck has to stand up for herself even when the majority of the island doesn’t want her to be a part of the races because she’s female. The plot is complex and interesting, but the book does drag at times. There were a couple of scenes that I found pointless. Overall, the story was really entertaining and I absolutely loved it.
Both Sean and Puck were both really well-developed characters. Puck was such a badass.Even though she was sometimes rude and short-tempered, but at least she was always true to herself. She wouldn’t be swayed into leaving the Races, even when nobody wanted her to be a part of them. Sean may have been the strong, silent type, but his love for his horse was such a nice characteristic. It was refreshing to see a male in a young adult novel who wasn’t brooding or controlling, but actually supportive and helpful. However, my favourite character was the American horse buyer, George Holly. He was such great comic relief at times, and I felt like he always voiced what everyone else was thinking. His relationship with Sean was by far my favourite in the book. All of the characters in Thisby were so dynamically written. Maggie Stiefvater has a gift for creating well-rounded characters that have flaws and feel like real people.
I highly recommend this novel, and I’m very eager to read The Raven Cycle series by Maggie Stiefvater, which I’ve heard is even better than this novel.