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Time for some Book Talk !

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Okay, this is very over due!  It is hard being a college student and keeping up with reading – especially an English major college student since we have so many other readings that we have to be doing.  Anyways, I just finished “The Scorpio Races” by Maggie Stiefvater. I am excited to talk this book over with my class because my peers can be pretty insightful and will probably point out a lot that I have missed or didn’t catch on to.

I really love Maggie Stiefvater.  I read her series: Linger, Shiver, and Forever.  I love supernatural/fantasy books they have always been my favorite.  I am also into that whole vampire obsession, but in my defense it was long before everyone else was!  I read the Twilight series like 5 years ago right before it got all big.  Gee, I keep getting into little tangents, now back on track… So since I already knew about Maggie Stiefvater, I was excited to read her new book, even though I was reluctant to move on from her previous characters.

I thought the book was good- very different from her other books.  I like this whole imaginary world that she created with these races and these vicious horses.  I don’t know where the setting is though?  Like the time period- I cannot tell if it is the future, present, or past.  They live very simple lives (maybe because they are poor?), but it confused me a little.  Also, they refer to their parents as mum and dad, so I wasn’t sure if the island that they live on is a British territory.

I like the gender situations she put into this text.  First off, the main girl’s name is Puck.  Her real name is Kate, but everyone calls her Puck.  Puck is the first female to race in the Scorpio Races which causes a big problem with all the traditional/superstitious men that have been racing for years.  This makes her racing experience harder than it has to be.  One man said to her, “‘A lot of them [men] consider a girl on the beach bad luck.  They won’t be happy to see you’” (190).  Another instance of this gender prejudice was when someone else said, “‘People die, love.  I’m all for women, but this isn’t a woman’s game.’ For some reason, this irritates me more than anything else I’ve heard all day.  It’s not even relevant” (65).  As you can see, people do not support her decision to race.

Unfortunately, Puck feels that she HAS to race to keep her brother home and keep their home.  Puck and her two brothers Gabe and Finn are orphans because their parents died.  So all the weight of her family staying together is on her shoulders because her eldest brother Gabe just cannot take it anymore.  I am the oldest sibling myself, and God forbid my little sister, brother, and I were orphans, I would NEVER leave, no matter how much I “couldn’t handle it”.  I think it also says something about Puck’s character how she steps up to the plate when her oldest male sibling doesn’t.  I think this novel plays with gender roles very well.

Has anyone else read this book?  If so, please share your comments!

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