The Magician King (Magicians Series #2)

The Magician King (Magicians Series #2)

by Lev Grossman

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Overview

Return to Fillory in the riveting sequel to the New York Times bestseller and literary phenomenon, The Magicians, now an original series on SYFY, from the author of the #1 bestselling The Magician’s Land.

Quentin Coldwater should be happy. He escaped a miserable Brooklyn childhood, matriculated at a secret college for magic, and graduated to discover that Fillory—a fictional utopia—was actually real. But even as a Fillorian king, Quentin finds little peace. His old restlessness returns, and he longs for the thrills a heroic quest can bring.

Accompanied by his oldest friend, Julia, Quentin sets off—only to somehow wind up back in the real world and not in Fillory, as they’d hoped. As the pair struggle to find their way back to their lost kingdom, Quentin is forced to rely on Julia’s illicitly learned sorcery as they face a sinister threat in a world very far from the beloved fantasy novels of their youth.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780434020805
Publisher: Heinemann, William Limited
Publication date: 09/28/2011
Series: Magicians Series , #2

About the Author

LEV GROSSMAN is the book critic for Time magazine and author of five novels, including the international bestseller Codex and the #1 New York Times bestselling Magicians trilogy. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and three children.

Read an Excerpt

Copyright © 2011 by Lev Grossman
(Continues…)



Excerpted from "The Magician King"
by .
Copyright © 2012 Lev Grossman.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“Lev Grossman’s The Magician King is a fresh take on the fantasy-quest novel—dark, austere, featuring characters with considerable psychological complexity, a collection of idiosyncratic talking animals (a sloth who knows the path to the underworld, a dragon in the Grand Canal), and splendid set pieces in Venice, Provence, Cornwall, and Brooklyn.”
The Daily Beast

“In this page-turning follow-up to his bestselling 2009 novel The Magicians, Grossman takes another dark, sarcastically sinister stab at fantasy, set in the Narnia-esque realm of Fillory.”
Entertainment Weekly

The Magician King is clearly the middle book in a trilogy, but it’s that rare creature that bridges the gap between tales and still stands on its own. And just as the first book showed that growing up is hard no matter how much power you have, it shows that becoming an adult involves far more than just reaching the right age.”
The A.V. Club

“Fabulous fantasy spiked with bitter adult wisdom—not to be missed.”
Kirkus Reviews(starred review)

“Fans of The Magicians will find this sequel a feast and will be delighted that a jaw-dropping denouement surely promises a third volume to come.”
Booklist

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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The Magician King 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 208 reviews.
dWeng More than 1 year ago
Grossman's world(s) of magic have the gritty texture of reality: rough, true, at times simultaneously horrifying and hilarious. While I understand other reviewers' repulsion for the tragic bits, I have to completely disagree. The first book, perhaps, borrowed from Harry Potter in that it was about a school for magic; the similarities end there. Somehow Grossman has created a world where magic is believable, hard, and accessible to the naturally inclined and the completely driven. The characters may be self interested, but if you've ever been aroudn the acedemically elite, you'll find this to be a completely believable portrayal of people obsessed with knowledge and power. Their faults are what seperate them from the glittery world of Harry Potter, where the good guys are perfect and the bad guys are evil. In Grossman's world, the answers are not so simple. This is a satisfying answer to questions left unanswered from the first book. I highly reccommend it for anyone who wanted realllllyyyy badly to like Harry Potter, but couldn't get over what a perfect little snot he always was.
lkhokie More than 1 year ago
I had read the first book in this series, The Magicians. I had very mixed feelings about it because I felt like it was not an original work and was merely a different take on Harry Potter and Narnia. I didn't think that I was going to read any other books in this series. However, I found myself thinking about The Magicians and decided to pick up this book. I gave the series another chance and am very glad I did so. I couldn't put this book down!! I knew that this would also most likely not be a book of completely original ideas, but I think knowing that put me in the right mindset for this book. It's a combination of all the other Narnia books and it is so much better for it. I was expecting it to be a spin off of at least one of the books, whether it was the Voyage of the Dawn Treader or most likely the Magician's Nephew (judging by the title). It was these books, and more! This was a very good book and I love the fact that I was willing to give this series another chance. You have to go into this book knowing that it is not going to be completely original ideas, but it will be different spins on those ideas. As long as you remember that, this book is well worth it. It was a lot better than the first book which is a rare thing for most sequels.
Schwa More than 1 year ago
Loved The Magicians, but this second installment was even better. Especially enjoyed finding out what Julia's story was at it pertained to the first book. The book ends with another semi-cliffhanger, even though the main story does finish, so I can't wait for more of Quentin's adventures!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was so incredible. I thought the first was un-matchable but I was wrong. Lev did it again as I could not put this book down. The way he writes is just so incredible.
Alyssaface More than 1 year ago
I actually liked this one much more than the first book. When I finished reading The Magicians for the first time, I felt that I had enjoyed the the story, but there was something about it that made it just an A- for me. The Magician King, however, was a total A+. It's so much more witty, funny, and exciting, and it didn't have huge sections that just lulled on by like the first book. I found myself laughing out loud several times. I also really enjoyed the dueling narratives of Quentin's present and Julia's past. The only complaint I have is that the ending was a bit of a let down, but it was a great way to leave the story open for a 3rd book without making it completely obvious about what's going to happen in it. (Also, huge points to the author for slipping in Venture Bros. and Hark! A Vagrant references in there; someone definitely has his finger on the pulse of his target audience.)
CLANCY SMITH More than 1 year ago
The novels that this talented writer creates are novels that are timeless, and will make you want to read them over d over again.
DCFantasyNerd More than 1 year ago
Upon first reading, the Magician King seems a little bit disjointed. Things have moved on since the end of Grossman's previous work, the Magicians, and the transformation seems jarring and disjointed to where the previous work left off with Quentin. However, once you've acclimated to the differences, the book proceeds to tell an engaging story. The Magicians had a stark style that undermined the final redemption found in the story. The Magician King, however, reverses that dynamic. Here the prose is more rich, more vibrant, but with repeated warnings that calamity will strike at the end. Ultimately, the Magician King was a pleasurable read. Beyond the book's obvious role as a novel, the themes presented in the story will resonate in the reader's mind for sometime afterwards.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was great! What an amazing writer!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Life is an adveture and this book demonstrates it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lev Grossman is so good, you forget he's there. He carries you straight into the magical worlds where you become friends with the characters -- and miss them when you put the book down. But, you must read his earlier book, The Magicians, first to truly enjoy this book.
lasonadora More than 1 year ago
A perfectly decent book to escape with for a few hours, but not one that you will think about much after you close it. If you liked the first book of this series, this one is even better. You should read them in order as principle plot twists in the first are fully discussed in the second and will spoil the experience. A good editor could really enhance this series.
Police-Dispatcher More than 1 year ago
It's a great story and a fun read as long as you intentionally take your mind out of the overpowering Harry Potter world. Once you do so you will find that this book (and the previous one) both have something to offer in this genre, and they're both very good reads. I was captivated by first book and the second one proved to be just as good. I especially enjoyed learning Julia's background more.
ThaliaShep More than 1 year ago
This book is awesome! I re-read The Magicians to read this book because the first one was so good. I really hope there's a sequel! Ignore those angry reviews-if you're an adult and love fantasy books read this one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kicked my butt. Bring on part 3!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
But there better be a third book!
bethieg More than 1 year ago
Honestly, it was like reading the Narnia series all over again. With different people.
Angie1327 More than 1 year ago
This book still had a neat magical plot but I did not feel that it was as good as The Magicians. I did feel that it dragged on quite a bit. The Julia chapters I found myself skimming through and generally disliking. I understand they were important for the plot but it made the story seemed forced. I feel like the open ending of The Magicians was a better ending for the books than this sequel. I'm not sure if there is another that I will read it.
Natalie Pinter More than 1 year ago
I was a huge fan of the first book and this was just as good. Trippy, mystical but with an irreverent edge that makes for some very fun reading. I loved the sloth.
MrMalcolm More than 1 year ago
The sequel is just as great as the first volume! I finished this in one sitting. An excellent antidote to Harry Potter.
CodexCPB More than 1 year ago
Absolutely fantastic and was a wonderful sequel to the original! Like the first, it had my mind reeling after I finished it and I can't wait for the next one!
ras61 More than 1 year ago
It was not a book that grabbed me and I had to read. It was just okay.
rabones More than 1 year ago
I loved this and The Magicians. Both are great stories, wonderful, goofy, interesting characters. So much like our reality and our fantasy.
SnipeTheLibro More than 1 year ago
If you want to know more about yourself, read this book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very entertaining
ruthsic More than 1 year ago
The Magician King picks up, in the linear timeline, at two years past the ending of The Magicians, and continues the story of Quentin as a Fillorian King, while also giving backstory on Julia through intermittent chapters, recounting her time as a hedge witch on Earth. There are many things that can be said about this series, but one thing we can all agree on - it doesn't pull any punches. The Harry Potter references have mostly worn off and there's a bit of a Voyage of the Dawn Treader situation going on, but the main thing this series tells us is that magic is ruthless and will take as much as it gives. Case in point: Quentin, bored with life in the idyllic Fillory, wants something more and stumbles upon a quest, realizing many times throughout it that romantic ideals of quest don't always match the reality. Mirroring this quest is Julia's quest - when she was rejected by Brakebills, she sought out whatever magic she could and it takes her more than four years to get to a point where she finally finds what she was looking for. On the magic lore forefront I wouldn't say it clears up much about the mechanics itself - when the characters are describing the studies, the techniques and everything math that comes along with it, I pretty much skimmed it because it was quite complicated and besides, that was barely the point. The point was that these geniuses who got access to magic wanted more of it, and who can blame them when they loved magic so much. But magic, as the proverbial saying goes, comes with a steep price, and this book goes more into the concept of divinity and what it means for Magicians, and for the multiverse at large. It was a fascinating journey, even if you remove the character arcs, in that we learn so much about this world Grossman has built up. And with the character arcs, and the respective pain they go through? It comes together in a frightfully dark comedic fantasy, and the ending is quite explosive in terms of both world-building and character arcs. My one discontention about this book is that the character POV are very myopic - the secondary characters are barely fleshed out, and its only Quentin's stray observations (and not their actions themselves) that give any sort of depth to them. Julia's comes across as more cold but still you get a sense of the characters around her, but they fade away for us, much like they do for her. This kind of narration would have probably worked better in first person, maybe? Overall, though, this book manages to keep you hooked and reaching for more, much like the Magicians.