|Horses at Popham Beach, Maine|
In this passage, Puck observes Sean’s character in how he wraps Corr’s legs:
“There’s something rewarding about watching a job well done, or at least a job done with everything you’ve got. I try to put my finger on how it is that Sean Kendrick seems so different to other people, what it is about him that makes him seem so intense and still at the same time, and I think, finally that it’s something about hesitation. Most people hesitate between steps or pause or are somehow uneven about the process. Whether that process is wrapping a leg or eating a sandwich or just living life. But with Sean, there’s never a move he’s not sure of, even if it means not moving at all.”Puck and Sean narrate in alternating points of view. Both were very likable, complex and well-developed characters, but it seemed unlikely that barely educated teens on a remote island would sound so poetic. Had the chapters not been labeled, their voices would have been indistinguishable from each other. Third person narration would have been a better choice. Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the lyrical writing and the wonderful sense of place.
“As I walk, I look past the people at the town that stands beneath them. The stones are gold and red in the streetlights, the shadows black and brown and deep death blue, all the colors of the November ocean. Bicycles lie up against the walls as if a wave has washed them there and then retreated. Girls push by me, their strides ringing from the bells tied around their ankles. Firelight flickers from one of the side streets, flames licking from a barrel, boys gathered around it. I look at Skarmouth and it looks back at me, its eyes wild.”After finishing The Scorpio Races, I longed to return to Skarmouth Island, to gallop along the cliffs by moonlight. As in the best myths, the tale was innocent enough for a ten-year-old child (if a bit gory) but complex enough for an adult too. Stiefvater is one of the best storytellers of young adult fiction. Take this one to the beach and enjoy.
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