The Magicians review



So I just wrapped up The Magicians by Lev Grossman. I had heard really good things about it so I gave it a shot. The story is centered around Quentin Coldwater,  an outcast kid from Brooklyn who suffers from low self esteem and a distinct sense of self loathing. He is of course bright,  and “misunderstood” and not appreciated by Julia (one of a trio of pals along with James in which Q plays the 3rd wheel.). He ends up at a school of magic called Brakebills College of Magical Pedagogy.  The bulk of the book is him meeting a new group of friends and getting through his years there at the school.  Well, lo and behold,  magic is real and there ensues the usual discovery of a whole new world etc etc.  The books last half is Q and pals finding themselves in Fillory,  the fantasy world that Q has lost himself in while reading a series of books published in the mid 20th century. Think of them like the Tolkien books. There is a whole world there and after Brakebills, Q ends up in Fillory. There is some relationship drama with Alice and she ends up being the actual baddest motherf-er of the group and sacrifices herself to save them.  And the self pity, self loathing  and misplaced anger that pours out of Quentin taints the whole book.

The story is fine and the system of magic is fine and the writing is fine… The problem is that Quentin is a whiny,  ungrateful,  miserable dipshit. He is just too unlikable.  He thinks like a child,  acts like a child and is just a pretty terrible person all around. The fact that this series centers around him is pretty disappointing.  At least Harry Potter was a child.  Quentin is just an insufferable douche.  I can’t bring myself to continue the series.. I just don’t care enough about the characters.

Anywho.. TL:DR 2.5 out of 5 magic spells…