The Magician King by Lev Grossman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I can't help but feel that this second Magicians book suffered from a serious case of More Of The Same Syndrome, leading to a bit of a sophomore slump. Sure, training is officially over for Quentin et al. They're no longer studying magic at Brakebills, they're now officially full-fledged magicians. But they're still learning all sorts of spellcraft - and learning that the slightest mistake could send them pretty much spiraling into Hell.
Still, though, the magic of Book 1 (as well as the recent Syfy TV series) seemed to have been drained from this sequel, somehow. Too many story threads (like the digging into the history of the Fillory books and Plover and the Chatwins) felt recycled from its predecessor. There's also the presence of a particularly pernicious plot device that also formed a huge part of the ending of Book 1, and The Magicians Season 1, and if the series repeats said plot device for Season 2, I'm sure fans and critics alive will be incensed, and that's putting it mildly.
But there's only one book left, and I'm really hopeful that The Magician King is the point where the series hits bottom.
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