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the magicians

by Lev Grossman

3.67 avg rating
Book 135 of 444 in the Best Fantasy Books
533 votes 10 comments
The New York Times bestselling novel about a young man practicing magic in the real world, now an original series on SYFY

The Magicians is to Harry Potter as a shot of Irish whiskey is to a glass of weak tea. . . . Hogwarts was never like this.”
—George R.R. Martin
 
“Sad, hilarious, beautiful, and essential to anyone who cares about modern fantasy.”
—Joe Hill
 
“A very knowing and wonderful take on the wizard school genre.”
—John Green
 
The Magicians may just be the most subversive, gripping and enchanting fantasy novel I’ve read this century.”
—Cory Doctorow

“This gripping novel draws on the conventions of contemporary and classic fantasy novels in order to upend them . . . an unexpectedly moving coming-of-age story.”
—The New Yorker

“The best urban fantasy in years.”
—A.V. Club


Quentin Coldwater is brilliant but miserable. A high school math genius, he’s secretly fascinated with a series of children’s fantasy novels set in a magical land called Fillory, and real life is disappointing by comparison. When Quentin is unexpectedly admitted to an elite, secret college of magic, it looks like his wildest dreams have come true. But his newfound powers lead him down a rabbit hole of hedonism and disillusionment, and ultimately to the dark secret behind the story of Fillory. The land of his childhood fantasies turns out to be much darker and more dangerous than he ever could have imagined. . . .

The prequel to the New York Times bestselling book The Magician King and the #1 bestseller The Magician's Land, The Magicians is one of the most daring and inventive works of literary fantasy in years. No one who has escaped into the worlds of Narnia and Harry Potter should miss this breathtaking return to the landscape of the imagination.

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10 comments
Anonymous | 2012-10-31 01:22:57
great
Anonymous | 2013-05-02 09:42:13
Awesome book! It combines Rowling with Tolkien and Lewis to excellent effect, providing an original storyline and well-developed characters which are easy to relate to. I cannot reccomend this enough to those who are bored of classic heroes saving the day.
Anonymous | 2014-12-05 03:08:47
If you havent read this but you have read narnia and harry potter then u fail at life these will change the way you look at all your faveorite fantasys
Anonymous | 2015-04-26 02:08:47
Defiantly not for everyone. I read the first book(The Magicians) and found the first part interesting, the second half was one of the most frustrating reading experiences i have ever had. The only plot of the book is that “magicians can do anything, so they are bored”. There are a lot of references to other works, some are good, some interesting
Anonymous | 2015-07-17 08:23:10
I liked the first book so much that, as soon as I finished reading it, I read it all over again. Then I read the other two, which in my opinion, are not quite as good, but still excellent. The Magicians is a coming-of-age-in-a-magical-fantasy-world novel for adults. It will make you think about your own youth and every fantasy escapist dream you ever had---then it will break your heart.
Anonymous | 2015-09-12 03:44:38
I wouldn't call this story epic. It just doesn't feel like an epic fantasy. Other than that, I loved the first and the third of the books but hat to grit my teeth through the second one. The characters and the themes are very easy to relate to, it's almost like a mirror with a magnifying effect or more like the author gives a big middle finger to the reader, and knows he can get away with it because he's brilliant. Well, perhaps there was a little too much sass for my taste. There were some cringe-worthy dialogues. I'm rambling, so I'll stop.
Nennorwe | 2015-09-23 06:39:16
It took me some time to get into but I think that this series is fantastic. It left me feeling a bit sad when I finished it, that painful nostalgic feeling one gets when a book is finished and I need to return to my reality ... I see bits of Narnia, HP, and His Darkest Materials in this yet the author does manage to pull off something unique and not completely derivative. I recommend this to anyone!!!
Anonymous | 2016-01-06 02:15:55
Good series overall, but certainly not a masterpiece. Some of the characters actions are incredibly frustrating at times, which is expected given that this is based on a coming of age and character development based plot. With that said, I still felt a lot of the characters were TOO one dimensional. Others had very little purpose. The plot was decent, but not particularly complex or even surprising. In the second book, it seems almost that one half of the plot had no real purpose. Another small annoyance is that the magic system never really shows off how awesome it can be. More than that, the system seems very inconsistent, with one moment a character using it to find ways to do ridiculous feats (such as space travel as a hypothetical example), but there are other times where they seem somewhat useless, and purposely avoid using their abilities.
Anonymous | 2017-02-16 10:37:26
terrible, one of the worst booke I ever had misfortune to rad.
Anonymous | 2018-02-21 02:50:42
One of the worst books I have ever read. Lewd at points and completely un-creative. Definitely skip.
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