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Archive for January 7th, 2010

The Magicians

 The Magicians by Lev Grossman.

Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Viking Adult; 1 edition (August 11, 2009)
ISBN-10: 0670020559

From Publishers Weekly

Harry Potter discovers Narnia is real in this derivative fantasy thriller from Time book critic Grossman (Codex). Quentin Coldwater, a Brooklyn high school student devoted to a children’s series set in the Narnia-like world of Fillory, is leading an aimless existence until he’s tapped to enter a mysterious portal that leads to Brakebills College, an exclusive academy where he’s taught magic. Coldwater, whose special gifts enable him to skip grades, finds his family’s world mundane and domestic when he returns home for vacation. He loses his innocence after a prank unintentionally allows a powerful evil force known only as the Beast to enter the college and wreak havoc. Eventually, Coldwater’s powers are put to the test when he learns that Fillory is a real place and how he can journey there. Genre fans will easily pick up the many nods to J.K. Rowling and C.S. Lewis, not to mention J.R.R. Tolkien in the climactic battle between the bad guy and a magician.

Oh boy.. ok, so.. I finally finished the Magicians…

It’s rare that I don’t find that review from Amazon isn’t spot on but in this case there is one word I find way off base… they say the book is a “fantasy thriller”.. well it is a fantasy, but if anything comes close to “thriller” it’s near the end of the book, and to be honest the last 100 pages was the (quote) adventure (unquote) of the whole 416 pages.

I did finish the book without giving up!  I kept thinking it was going to get better and be a surprisingly good book.   Then I found myself skimming in many areas.  To be honest ..overall.. I found this book boring.

The last 100 pgs were so -so but not enough to want me to get excited about it.  There were many things used that made you say, “ah..that idea was taken from Harry Potter”..but even that wasn’t enough.  I didn’t feel I got to know the characters so well that I cared about them.. and that’s unusual …

In defense I will say that I did read it all and didn’t give up on it.. so I am sure there are others out there that will like this book tremendously!   I’m guessing this just wasn’t a book for me.

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