The Magician King

The Magician King

A Novel

Book - 2011
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Return to Fillory in the riveting sequel to the New York Times bestseller and literary phenomenon, The Magicians

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.
Publisher: New York : Viking, c2011
ISBN: 9780670022311
Branch Call Number: FIC GRO
Characteristics: 400 p. : map ; 25 cm


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Jun 25, 2019

I would NOT recommend this book for a young adult audience, as someone above has done. Any book that includes a violent and detailed rape scene as the climax of one of the story lines is for adults only, as far as I'm concerned.

May 05, 2018

Another fantastic read in the series.

The Magician's King is split between two stories. We continue along with Quentin's story as he embarks on what he believes will be a quest. He is joined by some new characters as well as a few we didn't get to see much of in the previous book. Poppy, one of his new companions, brings a new and very much needed sense of perspective to Quentin and the group. Poppy has one of my favorite quotes in the series and in general. This quote is relevant, not just for the characters in the book, but I think for many of us as readers as well. We visit world after world in our reading while missing out on some equally beautiful places where we live. A 20 minute drive along with a couple mile long hike can take us somewhere the likes of which we thought was only possible in a Tolkien novel.

“You’re all so obsessed with other worlds, you’re so convinced that this one is crap and everywhere else is great, but you’ve never bothered to figure out what’s going on here!” ― Lev Grossman, The Magician King

The other half of the book gives us the story of Quentin's best friend (from before he was a magician) Julia. Julia took the same test as Quentin to get into Brakebills, but she failed. Her story takes us down the path not traveled. What becomes of magicians who don't have formal training? What lengths will they go to for magic? With Julia at least, it is perhaps more apt to ask what she won't do for magic.

SCL_Justin Jul 23, 2017

The Magician King is the sequel to Lev Grossman’s The Magicians. There were parts of this one that I liked better than the first, and things that weren’t as good, but the biggest difference is that there’s no Harry Potter school stuff in this book.

The story starts with Quentin as one of the royals (with his magician friends) of the magical land of Fillory. He’s a little bored and goes off on a quest to be a hero. A bit of that seemed like a step back from where he got to by the end of the first book. The action takes him to Earth again, and he learns how little he knows about everything. Parallel to that is Julia’s school of hard magical knocks story of how she became a magician (she didn’t go to Brakebills, the school in the first book).

Overall it’s a good book and the ending is more satisfying than the end to the first one. I’d also gladly suggest this for a YA audience.

Mar 31, 2017

The sequel to 'The Magicians' turns out to be noticeably better than the first book. The follow up still focuses primarily on King Quentin Coldwater of Fillory, but the story also follows the path of Queen Julia and High King Eliot. While it was easy to dislike Quentin in the first book, his character begins to 'mature' in a sense. The concept of 'getting everything you want but not feeling happy' starts to fade as he begins to lose the things he took for granted. Most of the book involves Quentin dealing with the consequences of the constant quests and adventures that he believes will make him happy. You also notice Eliot begin to develop a sense of responsibility in his role as the High King. He no longer sees himself as a tourist on resort, but develops a sense of responsibility for his kingdom and its people. Aside from enjoying seeing Quentin on the receiving end of well deserved comeuppance a few times, the story gets extremely dark and depressing in the parts told from Julia's perspective. There are a few rough parts that might make readers cringe. Not in a "that's corny" way, but a "wow this just got really dark" way.

All in all, if you made it through the first book, you'll find the sequel to be much better read.

Feb 24, 2017

This is the second book in the Magician's series. There is a bit more humour than the first book, but you can almost feel the menacing darkness swirling around the edges. Grossman has greatly improved his writing over the first book, so I'm definitely going to read the third book!

Aug 13, 2016

Despite what the back cover flap says about his credentials, Grossman has the writing style of a teenager and has been heavily influenced by the Narnia books. No better than the first book in this series.

May 10, 2016

The ending was a little disappointing. Overall a good read. Couldn't put it down.

FindingJane Sep 04, 2015

Dense, layered and complex, Mr. Grossman takes us back and forth on a dizzying journey from the magical Fillory and not-so-mundane Earth as our intrepid (read: bored) protagonist Quentin attempts to wring meaning from his life. When Quentin became a king, his yearnings didn’t end but it takes him a long while to figure out what he really desires. Along for the ride is the ever-enigmatic Julia. In the previous novel, Julia seemed defined mainly by her anger and resentment. This novel shows how even those emotions are gradually being stripped away to leave a Julia who is becoming more herself—and less and less human with every passing day.

This novel is as much about Julia’s development as it is Quentin’s. The path she chose was not an easy one and the reader is made to read every heart-wrenching detail about it. Since Julia also has trouble figuring out her motivations—what does she really want? Money? Power? Family? Revenge?—it is with bated breath as we read her inner thoughts and outer actions to learn what she truly yearns to possess.

The novel is a ripping adventure, multi-faceted and glimmering with workings of magic, both dark and light. Goddesses, gods, deities, tricksters, fey folk, magicians, kings, queens and valiant mortals all swim in the depths of Mr. Grossman’s pages and reading them induces a rapture from which it is a shame to awake.

It would seem that Quentin finally achieves what he really needed—maturity. But there’s another book to come in this trilogy. I’m already buzzing with anticipation.

IPL_Mandy Jan 07, 2015

in book 2 of the series, Quentin and the crew are joined by Julia, Quentin's high school friend who painstakingly clawed her way to becoming a hedge witch while everyone else enjoyed the luxuries and structure of Brakebills. They become kings and queens of Fillory and quickly find adventures that take them to the outer reaches of that world and beyond. Magic creatures abound and new realms await. Serving suggestion: mead and rabbit stew

libraricorn Dec 19, 2014

Lev Grossman's series continues on its increasingly complex and intriguing look at magic and its mechanics. Some mysteries revealed and more created.

If you enjoyed the Magicians you are unlikely to be disappointed with its sequel.

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