The Magicians by Lev Grossman
Harry Potter sets exceptionally high standards for all magician stories from here on out. It’s unfair to compare anything to Harry Potter but along with that, all the hype I’d been hearing about this novel set high expectations, and the novel sourly let me down.
The Magicians is about an 18-year-old boy from Brooklyn, Quentin Coldwater, who gets accepted into a secret, elite magic school called Brakebills. Quentin learns magic is very difficult and tedious. The learning process is intense and demanding.
**Slight Spoilers ahead** The novel spans Quentin’s entire 4 years at Brakebills as well as the year after. Large periods of time are summarized or skipped over.
Very little happened while Quentin was at school. He made friends, he learned magic (which was shockingly boring to hear about), and he lacked a plan for after graduation.
It wasn’t until Quentin and his friends graduated (3/4 of the way into the novel) that the plot takes an interesting twist. But by that time it was too late. I was already bored.
I certainly don’t need loads of action to enjoy a story but the main characters in The Magicians had no long-term goals or ambitions to keep me interested.
As a reader, this timeline made me feel very out of touch with the characters.
I didn’t connect with the characters. The plot was uneventful and I had no idea where the characters were headed or what they wanted.