A university specializing in magic is the setting, but the true essence of the novel involves the relationship between students. Interesting parallel between our educational systms and the ranking of normal magicians and gifted magicians. Reminds me at times of The Tallisman by Stephen King, one of my favorite novels or all times. Some people have thought of this novel as an "adult Harry Potter" but I disagree. if you want a book that can take you way and maintain credibility and believability, you will like this one.
Addicted to books, both print and audio-.
I read Lev Grossman's previous book, The Magicians, and decided to listen to this one. I enjoyed both a great deal. They are perhaps a little longer than they could be, but it's so much fun and so interesting that who cares? I think this was my first time listening to Mark Bramhall, who adds a lot of character and humor to his reading. I love the main premise of these books. If you're looking for something fun and absorbing to listen to that also has complexity, go for it. Particularly good for people familiar with fantasy and children's books. Several steps above Harry Potter in my book, and written for adults.
Like its predecessor, The Magician King follows Quentin Coldwater, now King of the fantastical land of Fillory, as he deals with the existential struggles of being a powerful wizard with a real personality. Subverting your expectations appears to be a favorite pastime of Grossman's two Fillory novels; just when you think you've got the course charted, along comes a fresh gust to blow the story into a strange new direction. This time around, Quentin's friend Julia fills the role of angst-ridden magician in the making, but her story is at once darker and more ultimately uplifting than Quentin's was. The story as a whole feels easier, less fraught, and less self-conscious than the previous book, even though it's arguably a more mature and thoughtful treatment of magic, desire and a person's ability to live with themselves and their choices.
Grossman has really done a great job with this second book in what I am hoping is a new series for these magicians. It is easy to tell that the characters and Grossman are both more mature and more sure of personalities, roles in the story, and dialogue. The plot takes off as the 4 - Julia, Quintin, Elliot, and Janet are kings and queens in Fillory and as they once again get drawn and dragged into quests and adventures. There are great weaving story lines and Grossman has some great moments of twists and reveals. I am expecting there to be at least one more in this series with how it ended, very leading into a new step type ending, but still very well done.
Audible rawks! My taste is beyond eclectic and Audible always has plenty to choose from, no matter what mood I'm in!
Though The Magicians seemed like it ended in a great spot, when I heard that there was another book planned I immediately thought of a few storylines I wouldn't mind seeing Mr. Grossman flesh out, especially Julia's story of what she was up to while The Magicians was happening. Let's just say I eventually felt like calling TMI (felt like, but didn't stop listening, of course) as Julia's tale spun towards the point where she would join with the Physical Kids. Quentin's story, the main plot, continues from where we left him emotionally and logistically and the mix of old and new characters hit me as just right.
Even when the action is at its high point, something in Grosssman's prose keeps it tamped down a bit. Likewise, Mark Bramhall's performance keeps things at a quiet, understated pitch while losing nothing of the wonder/horror that might be happening on the page. Quentin and Julia pride themselves on being cool customers: Bramhall gets that tone and maintains it.
Adventures abound and magic is, again, not always what you want it to be. Now, there is one more female character I'd like to hear from, and it seemed to me that there was a hint that Grossman isn't completely done with her either. Fingers crossed for the next installment!
I'm not going to completely trash this book as its not 100% bad; however, read the review from the Washington Post and verbatim- thats exactly how this book is. The language takes away from the book way too much. As the Washington Post said it: "its been done before and better."
Yes, What a good story. The descriptions were the best part, the simplest of things, the way something looked, followed by a story about how it look that reminded him of something unreal, something out of a nightmare. As if it she was a large demon from hell with her pitchfork and flaming torso of liquid fire smelling of brimstone. Holy shit, there she was her real form looking straight at him in that hellish gaze. He took a step back.
Of course I don't do it justice. The book is really good.
Q got screwed in the end... passports, shit.. What kind of shit is that? At least Julia got to through with or with out her humanity,
I liked the summoning of the Fox, and being tricked. I liked that a lot.
Elliot was probably my favorite, always had that aloof chatter, and Julia second favorite.
Mark Bramhall, does a great job reading, doing the characters voices. I think adds quite a bit of depth to the characters, his intonations, his take on how they speak. Adds a whole lot. I think these books are better because he is doing the narrating.
My internal voice that does the voices are not as dramatic as he is.. just makes it better.
Thank you Mark Bramhall, You are in league with David Shaughnessy! Bravo!
Oh and your french pronunciation is really good.
Laugh.. the very end, I was a little irritated at the end.. but not enough to really worry about it, just enough to not stop, just a yearning to keep listening to the next book.
Worse, I got bored with the back and forth of the Magic circle going back and forth in texting. I am glad it was short.. I get it why.. boring, just before the big climax and summoning the bad fox. It was a good (if there was such a thing) low point, glad it didn't drag on any longer.
I understand why this series was turned into a series. (although the characters have been changed a lot) good changes and the story line changed too (good changes) in my opinion.
Good story, good characters, good use of expletives, Suburb use of inner stories in the stories. Brought depth to the details,
Quinten - is sort of a melancholy character, is always a moment away from killing himself, or ditching the whole deal. Glad he got cheerier at the end. Even with losing it all, he was better, less broken, less of a wimp.