Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Magician” as Want to Read:
The Magician
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Book* *Different edition

The Magician

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  2,787 Ratings  ·  292 Reviews
Set in the bohemian café society of Paris at the turn of the nineteenth century, Maugham's exploration of hypnotism and the occult was inspired by the sinister black magician Aleister Crowley. At the start of this compulsive gothic horror story, Arthur and his beautiful, innocent fiancée Margaret look forward to an idyllic life together, until they encounter the mesmerisin ...more
Paperback, 233 pages
Published November 2nd 2000 by Vintage Classics (first published 1908)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Magician, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Heather I am assuming you mean "Left Hand Path," and I found this author from the 1930's; Dennis Wheatley under a Google search of LHP.
Under Explore Tab at…more
I am assuming you mean "Left Hand Path," and I found this author from the 1930's; Dennis Wheatley under a Google search of LHP.
Under Explore Tab at top menu of screen, drop down shows Listopia where can be found under the search box entry of Occult Fiction a few Categories of relevant lists of books:
1. Gurdjieff Work in Fiction,
2. The Dennis Wheatley Library of the Occult
3. Magical Fiction For Magicians

Hope this helps.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-10)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
Dan Schwent
Feb 17, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Arthur Burdon is due to marry his fiance, Margaret Dauncey. The pair have the misfortune of meeting Oliver Haddo, a self-styled magician and pompous ass. When Arthur assaults Haddo, the Magician hatches a plan to ruin Arthur's life in the most insidious of ways...

The Magician is a tale of revenge, seduction, and things of that nature, written by Maugham after he met Aleister Crowley. It's pretty much a horror novel, honestly.

Oliver Haddo is a revolting character that made my skin crawl and his
...more
Nancy Oakes
The Magician has so many of those elements that send my little dark-fiction reader heart racing, among them pulpy mysterious melodrama, a bit of decadence, and of course the dark forces of the occult and the supernatural. At its heart though, it is a story of revenge plotted by a most sinister villain, the "Magician" Oliver Haddo, and the race to save young Margaret Dauncey, the woman at the center of it all.

for plot details etc., you can go to my reading journal: http://www.oddlyweirdfiction.c
...more
Trevor
Mar 01, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literature
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cat
May 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2014, ebook
The Magician may not be Maugham's most known work, but it's my favourite so far.

Arthur and Margaret are about to marry when the sinister Oliver Haddo comes into their lives. Haddo is known for practising ocultism and to deal with the dark arts. At first, Arthur doesn't take him seriously; when strange things concerned with Margaret start taking place, Arthur is forced to realize that maybe he should have taken care not to offend the man who is known as a magician.

After having read two of Maugham
...more
Michael
Sep 07, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
IN THESE MATTERS ALL IS OBSCURITY

"If I died tomorrow, every penny I have would be yours" – so spricht Arthur, gestandener Arzt, zu seinem Mündel Margaret, und unterstützt sie zustätzlich monatlich mit einer Summe, die der jungen Frau ein sorgloses Leben in Paris ermöglicht, jener Stadt, in der auch Maugham als junger Mann sich als Bohemien versucht hat. Ach, sagte das doch auch einmal jemand zu mir, aber so etwas geschieht vorzugsweise bei Courths-Maler und eben hier bei Maugham.

Arthur und Marg
...more
nettebuecherkiste
Sep 17, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: klassiker
Paris zu Beginn des 20. Jahrhunderts. Der junge Chirurg Arthur Burdon besucht sein Mündel Margaret, die gleichzeitig seine Verlobte ist. Sie wohnt mit ihrer ca. 10 Jahre älteren Freundin Susie Boyd zusammen, die wie sie selbst in Paris Kunst studiert. Es herrscht heile Welt, das Paar ist glücklich, die alleinstehende Susie durch ein Erbe gut versorgt. Auftritt Oliver Haddo, ein weitgereister, arroganter Zeitgenosse, der angeblich magische Kräfte besitzt. Doch inwiefern stellt er eine Bedrohung f ...more
Ali
Jan 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is certainly a novel worth persevering with. The beginning is dare I say dull, and for a little while it drags, but then suddenly it develops into a truly gripping read. The awfully sinister Oliver Haddo is a sly practitioner of the occult, who appears to use his skill to ruin the lives of a couple of good and innocent souls. An excellent read.
Benjamin Duffy
Aug 21, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books
What a surprising, interesting book. After reading all of W. Somerset Maugham's most celebrated works several times over, and delving eagerly into his lesser-known (though not necessarily lesser in quality) material afterwards, this is the first one to completely surprise me.

The book is preceded, happily, by a foreword, "The Fragment of Autobiography," in which Maugham admits that the character of Oliver Haddo is indeed based on Aleister Crowley. He pulls no punches in his assessment of the real
...more
Anushree Rastogi
Maugham's novel The Magician is an aesthetic disaster. From the fumbling realism at the beginning of the novel to the childishly Gothic fable that it turns into, the book seems to lack structure, design and well developed characters.
Maugham himself, on reading the book later, described it as “lush and turgid.” Cluttered with adjectives, the writing, bordering on being kitschy, does little to gloss over a story that is formulaic and shallow.
The plot is facile and it is no surprise that it was m
...more
Alexandra
Mit Freude habe ich dieses Buch in einer Lesegruppe begonnen, soll die Hauptfigur ja dem legendären und spannenden Aleister Crowley nachgezeichnet sein. Nach Beendigung der Lektüre bin ich mehr als enttäuscht und muss mir hier durchaus den Hinweis verkneifen, der sicher als goldene Regel jedem Jungautor auf dem Weg mitgegeben wird: "Junge schreib über Sachen, die Du verstehst bzw. die Du selbst erlebt hast."

Die Hauptakteure erinnern fast ein bisschen an Dostojewskis Adeligensalons - Bürgerliche,
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Leviathan
  • Couples, Passersby
  • The Hothouse
  • Gothic
  • A Dark Muse: A History of the Occult
  • Bronsteins Kinder
  • Wellen
  • Gothic Short Stories
  • Coup de Grâce
  • Four Gothic Novels: The Castle of Otranto; Vathek; The Monk; Frankenstein
  • Mutmassungen über Jakob
  • The Road Through the Wall
  • The Nazi Occult
  • Un amour de Swann (À la recherche du temps perdu, #1.2)
  • Starlight
  • The Red Goddess
  • The Beautiful Mrs. Seidenman
  • The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham: A Biography
4176632
William Somerset Maugham was born in Paris in 1874. He spoke French even before he spoke a word of English, a fact to which some critics attribute the purity of his style.

His parents died early and, after an unhappy boyhood, which he recorded poignantly in Of Human Bondage, Maugham became a qualified physician. But writing was his true vocation. For ten years before his first success, he almost l
...more
More about W. Somerset Maugham...
“Yet magic is no more the art of employing consciously invisible means to produce visible effects. Will, love, and imagination are magic powers that everyone possesses; and whoever knows how to develop them to their fullest extent is a magician. Magic has but one dogma, namely, that the seen is the measure of the unseen.” 13 likes
“He was no longer the awkward man of social intercourse, who was sufficiently conscious of his limitations not to talk of what he did not understand, and sincere enough not to express admiration for what he did not like.” 1 likes
More quotes…