Study Guide

The Scorpio Races Family

By Maggie Stiefvater

Family

People say my brothers would be lost without me, but really, I'd be lost without them. (1.1)

The first line of the book shows just how important family is to Puck, although we're not sure if it's true. It seems to us like she's the glue holding her family together.

"Please don't ride her," Finn says, fervent. I can't quite remember the last time he's asked me something and sounded like he really meant it. (8.20)

The only person who tries to keep Puck from riding a water horse is none other than a member of her own family. No one else would care if she were devoured.

What will [Finn] have left if he doesn't have the car to putter over? (19.19)

Family makes sacrifices for each other, and Finn's is a big one. He's not just giving up his favorite possession so that Puck has a chance at winning the race—he's giving up one of his only possessions.

I don't know anything about my older brother these days. (29.5)

As someone who values family above all else, Puck takes it as a huge slight that her brother has been keeping secrets from her. Should he have been more open with her? After all, their parents are dead. The siblings only have each other.

"My great-great-grandfather helped build this pier, and I'm not leaving it." (29.41)

One of the Carroll brothers gives Puck a little taste of his own family history. The families of Thisby likely go back many generations, which is impressive given how many people get eaten by the capaill ever year.

"Hey now, is that our Kate Connolly?" (29.45)

The way a complete stranger addresses Kate as "our" Kate Connolly makes it seem like everyone in the village is part of one big happy family. But the fact that everyone refers to everyone else by their first and last names every time is less than personal. Which is it?

"The blood doesn't always come through," Malvern says. (35.10)

Yeesh. This is a cutting remark. Malvern might be talking about a horse, but the same could also be said about him and his son. He definitely doesn't feel that Mutt lives up to the Malvern name.

I want to keep my sweet, innocent brother the way he is. (37.23)

Puck is super protective of her brother. With his anxieties and nervous tics, we're not sure if that's a good idea or not. But we're not related, so we have a more distant perspective on the matter.

I imagine Dove taken from me in this way, and anger churns in my stomach. (42.38)

Dove is like a family member to Puck. We're not sure if Finn's car is also like a family member to him, since it's not alive and all. It's easier to accept animals than inanimate objects as family members because they blink, move, think, and breathe.

"You really want to prove something to your father, you've got to win against us." (53.46)

If the Malvern family actually behaved like a family, half the bad things that happen in the Scorpio Races might not have happened. Mutt is violent and crazy because he wants his father to notice him more than he notices Sean.