(note: I gave this one four stars on Goodreads, however, upon savoring the experience a bit, I've upgraded here to five!)
From: The Library
Wow, have I heard things about this book or what! Finally, I managed to get it from the library and immediately jumped into it. Then, I had to go camping for two weeks, and it was hard to concentrate on it, but once I got home, wow, the pages flew by!
This is a book that seems to be set in a current day, or slightly in the past even, perhaps, on a mysteriously quaint little island that seems to be quite isolated from the rest of the world.
That is, until November, when the Scorpio Races happen, and everyone comes to watch. But what's so different about these races than any other horse race? Well, it's because they are riding the powerful and deadly water/fairy horses that live in the ocean and only appear around this island. If people are brave and smart enough to capture them, then they can be tamed... barely... enough to ride them in these races. The people on this island make their living in this way.
But beyond the races themselves, this is a story about a boy and girl. A boy who has lived and breathed the races and the horses all his life. He dreams of making it on his own some day and breaking out from under the oppressive master that he's been working for every since his parents died.
The girl's story is similar in that she and her brothers have been on their own for years. They struggle financially and if she can win the race, maybe her brother won't have to leave to make ends meet.
So, she enters the race... and plans to ride her normal, very much tame, land horse against these blood thirsty, near-monster water horses. And her competition? None other than the boy mentioned above who has won the race four times before! And he has put everything at stake with the hopes of winning again!
I loved this story. So beautiful! And I'm not even a horse person! It's very rich in the description and slow and... just... beautiful. Some may find it a bit too slow actually. And it did take some time for me to get into it, but then, I loved it and enjoyed every minute of it. And the end? Yep... tears! Oh my.
Bottom line: I loved it.