Overall this book was entertaining, and the story, particularly the first half, was engaging. As previous reviewers have mentioned, there are times when it gets tedious. Also pointed out to some extent is the fact that the characters can be somewhat unsympathetic. I think this is compelling, in that the author is attempting to create a "reality story," fraught with human failings, in a fantasy context; so that there is not a clearly defined hero.
I disagree with those who claim that this book is a collection of stolen ideas. The book is a play on the Narnia concept as a vehicle for a modern day coming of age story, and is far from an allegory. Furthermore, the fact that a major setting is a school for magicians no more makes The Magicians a rip-off of Harry Potter than such presence makes Harry Potter a rip-off of Discworld. I found this story to be quite original and a refreshing departure from the typical fantasy/magician story.
I think the book is great, and I think the reader is great.
The language is fun, and playful, and interesting; it is different enough to put me in a fantasy realm, but common enough to be clearly understood. The story is beyond epic.
The reading is great. It may take time to get used to, but that is to be expected. I think Dotrice does an admirable job, and I think he makes as much use of his vocal capabilities as could be hoped for.
I'm a cheap person, and I like to make sure I'm getting my money's worth. While I initially resented having to pay two credits (is that just because the books are so popular now, with the HBO show?), I think this is completely worth it... I've paid double credits for each book in the series and will happily do so until the series is finished.
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