The Magician's Land

The Magician's Land

A Novel

Book - 2014
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"Quentin Coldwater has been cast out of Fillory, the secret magical land of his childhood dreams. With nothing left to lose he returns to where his story began, the Brakebills Preparatory College of Magic. But he can't hide from his past, and it's not long before it comes looking for him. Along with Plum, a brilliant young undergraduate with a dark secret of her own, Quentin sets out on a crooked path through a magical demimonde of gray magic and desperate characters. But all roads lead back to Fillory, and his new life takes him to old haunts, like Antarctica, and to buried secrets and old friends he thought were lost forever. He uncovers the key to a sorcery masterwork, a spell that could create magical utopia, a new Fillory--but casting it will set inmotion a chain of events that will bring Earth and Fillory crashing together. To save them he will have to risk sacrificing everything."--Publisher.
Publisher: New York : Viking, c2014.
ISBN: 9780670015672
Characteristics: 401 p. ; 24 cm.


From the critics

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Oct 12, 2017

Unsure how to feel about this book altogether. If you enjoy watching Steven Moffat's writing in Sherlock or Doctor Who, you will probably enjoy this book. If you dislike Steven Moffat, you likely won't.
Like in Moffat's writing, the overarching story itself commits no offense. Thematically, it gives a tidy wrap to Quentin's adventures in maturity, because we finally get to see him as a functional adult. The execution on the major details underpinning this story are where things go awry a little. Rather than treating his supporting cast like people, Grossman seems expend them like resources to prop up the front line of his story. For example, no longer a multi-dimensional character, Poppy seems to become a symbol of pregnancy to demonstrate both that Josh is responsible alongside the rest, and that the group as a whole is growing up. (Particularly frustrating is that Grossman feels the need to remind us of her pregnancy *every single time* she appears, as if the reader may have forgotten.) Alice has a similar fate. She lives and breathes as a character should, but it feels like Grossman treats her like a piece of meat to reward QC for growing up. She is a symbol of redemption for his previous folly, granted only when he's come far enough.
The whole ordeal feels very performative. Every action QC takes along his road to redemption seems to be showered in congratulatory fanfare (narratively speaking.)
"Look at QC! No longer is he immature! Watch as he performs acts indicative of maturity!"

I suppose what I'm getting at is that the narrative is just rather primitive -- to the point that the "supporting cast" is visible as just the mechanical infrastructure propping up the main character. Since that supporting cast is often women in romantic roles, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
If you can look past these kinds of things, the story is definitely fun and fluffy, and regardless of all of it, I would recommend the series.

Apr 06, 2017

An enjoyable finish to the Magicians trilogy. The story wraps up a lot of the questions that a reader would have after reading the first two books. Questions like: "How did Fillory begin?", "What happened to the dragons after they attempted to divert the old gods?" "What happened to Umber?", "What's happening with the Niffan Alice?". The story begins with Quentin, a few years after the he helped the denizons of the 'Neither-lands' dimension prevent the Old Gods from "fixing" (erasing) magic in the multiverse. He gets on with living a normal life as a professor at Brakebills, until a stunt by a talented senior named Plum sets him off on another adventure. Though it's more of a side story, we also find out what Eliot, Janet, Poppy and Josh have been doing in Fillory. This is the first book that even had a chapter dedicated to Janet's background and her own 'side quest' in Fillory. The book has a nicer ending than you would expect, but it leaves you with the feeling that the main cast got off luckier than they should have. The characters are still flawed, and it was hard to "like" any of them aside from Plum, Eliot and maybe Josh. Even without 'liking' the characters, the adventures and the conclusion were well worth the read.

Feb 24, 2017

This is the third and final book in the Magician's series. Most of the story-lines from the previous two books are wrapped up neatly, and we get to see a much more grown up Quentin Coldwater.

Jun 24, 2016

Nice. Enjoyable magic, magicians, fantasy... good stuff -

Jul 06, 2015

This book is the BEST! The whole series is well worth reading. Made me very nostalgic for Narnia, Hogwarts, Middle Earth, etc.

May 04, 2015

This is the third installment of the Magician's series, and it's as much fun to read as the other two. Harry Potter for adults

Nov 10, 2014

This is the third in the series, and I waver back and forth about how much I like it. The first book made me irritated the last time I re-read it, but this book does at least bring it to a satisfactory close, answering some questions that were set up in the first book and rounding off the story from book 2 (The Magician King).
I think fans of fantasy should give it a try, if only for the references to other fantasy worlds that the characters throw around.

Aug 23, 2014

I was a bit disappointed in this third volume. ““It was their most precious childhood fantasy, they used to run around…pretending they were Martin Chatwin, boy hero of a magical world of green fields and talking animals where they would attain total and complete self-actualization.” This quote is from early in this tome and your reaction to it may predict your feelings about this book. If this expresses how you feel about Fillory (aka Narnia) you may really like the third volume. I found Julia's story and the Earth settings (urban fantasy?) bits much more interesting and the Fillory bits a bit jejune. There's still some snap in this final story, however, as I will show with another quote, ““But not even the end of the world was going to stop Janet from being a bitch. It was the principle of the thing.”

bestscalycheetah Aug 19, 2014

I wish it was available in a different e- format. 3M is horrible.

mvkramer Aug 11, 2014

This book was like a balm, binding up and healing the wounds the previous two volumes inflicted on me. Who knew the ending of a series that seemed to relish subverting subverted happy-fairy-tale-coming-of-age expectations could be so uplifting? When I read the first book, a friend said "You'll like it, you'll love it, and then you'll hate it," and that was the truth. But the third book was just liking growing into love. Lev Grossman, I can't quit you.

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Jul 06, 2015

"He's said good-bye and buried them - the Chatwins, Fillory, Plover, Whitespire - but there must be some last invisible unbroken strand connecting them to him. Something deeper than mourning. The wound had healed, but the scar wouldn't fade, not quite."

Aug 16, 2014

“But not even the end of the world was going to stop Janet from being a bitch. It was the principle of the thing.” page 298

Aug 16, 2014

“It was their most precious childhood fantasy, they used to run around…pretending they were Martin Chatwin, boy hero of a magical world of green fields and talking animals where they would attain total and complete self-actualization.” Page 85


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Jul 06, 2015

Quentin has been cast out of Fillory. Desperate and alone, he embarks on a quest to make his way back, revisiting many places from his past.

Janet and Eliot are also on a quest, to save Fillory from uncertain doom.

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