Juliet's Reviews > The Magicians

The Magicians by Lev Grossman
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's review
Mar 29, 11

really liked it

Fabulous! I bought this novel after hearing Lev Grossman speak at the Perth Writers Festival and I was not disappointed. To describe it as 'Harry Potter for grown-ups' is a little misleading, though it is indeed a story about a young man who is plucked from his everyday existence and sent to a school of magic, in this case, a secretive American university which takes only the brightest of the bright. But it's also a story about those fantasy books we all loved as children, stories in which ordinary kids go through a portal and find themselves in a different world, a world of magic, quests, adventures and brave deeds.

The socially inept but extremely clever hero is a devotee of an (imaginary) series of children's books, clearly the Narnia books in a different guise. His longing to escape to a world like Fillory is part of the emotional pull of this story. It balances light and dark brilliantly, with the discovery that perhaps one can enter another world through a portal, perhaps one can join a great struggle for freedom or power there, but that there may be dark consequences. For, of course, this is a story for grown-ups.

My one criticism is that the ending seemed rather rushed, as if the author was trying to cram in everything he could within a certain word count, or by a certain deadline. Overall, a wonderful read and a highly original book (written before the first Harry Potter was published!)
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Reading Progress

02/07 marked as: read

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Thoraiya How could it be written before the first Harry Potter was published when there's quiddich jokes? *even more confused*

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