The Magician King

The Magician King (The Magicians, #2)The Magician King by Lev Grossman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I found this second book in the Magicians trilogy to be a faster and more involving read than the first (which I also happened to love). With no more summarized years of schooling to sit through, or cocktail parties full of bored, jaded twenty-somethings to endure (I know those scenes were important for understanding the characters, but they weren’t exactly exciting to read about), THE MAGICIAN KING is much stronger in terms of plot and forward momentum. Quentin has grown since the last book, and although he’s still prickly, he’s much closer to being the hero he always dreamed of being. Unexpectedly, I felt less of an attachment to the Brakebills this time around (Janet is barely in the novel, and Eliot mostly keeps to the background), and new character Poppy didn’t do much for me, but in their place I was completely captivated by Julia and her story, as well as her well drawn hedge witch friends. While Julia only cameos in the first novel, here she’s on center stage, and it pays off in spades. Great, funny, epic, and heart-rending, THE MAGICIAN KING tricks you into thinking it’s still Quentin’s story, but really it’s Julia all the way down. I’m looking forward to book number three!

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