The Magician King (TV Tie-In): A Novel (Magicians Trilogy #2) (Paperback)

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Other Books in Series

This is book number 2 in the Magicians Trilogy series.

Staff Reviews

Atonement is an art of balance. In litereature it is the closes thing we'll find to a magical object. It causes strories to cohere, and infuses them with drama and insight. Atonement is the lodestone of the Sagas, and the Greek Tragedies equally. The Magician King, which follows Lev Grossman's The Magicians, employs atonement in a fresh and prodigal manner. Expelled from its pages, it is soon spotted lurking again in the margins, and hidden in the folds of every curtain. For Atonement requires rootedness and that is the very thing Quentin Coldwater, the central figure of Lev Grossman's Magicians book is motivated to avoid. The same might be said of the other central figure of the book, Julia, a peripheral character in the first book, who has achieved power outside the normal avenues of a magical college education.

The narrative alternates between carrying forward from the end of The Magicians, and telling Julia's history retrospectively. The world of illicit magic, far from the safety and more conventional methodology of the magical college, Brakebills, opens up a group of compelling new characters,  intimately involved in Julia's rise to power. Their heartbreaking combination of jaded worldliness, restive intellectual curiousity, and emotional naviete is what makes these books such a delight! What a pleasure it is to find characters immersed in dangerous certainty, and to be filled with uncertainty and mistakeness as a reader. The magic of these book lies in their use of inversion, a fantasy which deconstructs itself yet becomes magical, characters who spurn meaning and end up immersed in it.   One would have to search across many dimensions to find a book at once so philosophically challenging, emotionally astute, and flat out fun as the Magician King.  There are many different ways to get from one point to another. Quentin's path is as intricate, and engaging as anything you'll read.

— From DDG Store Favorite Fiction

August 2011 Indie Next List

“Not since the seemingly never-ending wait for the seventh Harry Potter book have I been so antsy about a release. Lev Grossman's The Magicians, my favorite novel of 2009 by a landslide, cleverly combined aspects of classic fantasy with modern literature and pop culture. With that groundwork in place, Grossman takes us back to Fillory with The Magician King. Quentin is a powerful sorcerer and a royal monarch who is bored out of his mind. He embarks on a seemingly menial errand to collect back taxes from a faraway island and stumbles into an epic and momentously important quest to save the magical world. Grossman's trademark eloquent-yet-hip writing style flourishes in this sequel, a creative and entertaining novel well worth the wait.”
— Greg Bruce, Boswell Book Company, Milwaukee, WI


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.

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.

Praise For…

“[A] serious, heartfelt novel [that] turns the machinery of fantasy inside out.”
The New York Times (Editor’s Choice)

“A spellbinding stereograph, a literary adventure novel that is also about privilege, power, and the limits of being human. The Magician King is a triumphant sequel.”

“[The Magician King] is The Catcher in the Rye for devotees of alternative universes. It’s dazzling and devil-may-care. . . . Grossman has created a rare, strange, and scintillating novel.”
Chicago Tribune

The Magician King is a rare achievement, a book that simultaneously criticizes and celebrates our deep desire for fantasy.”
The Boston Globe

“Grossman has devised an enchanted milieu brimming with possibility, and his sly authorial voice gives it a literary life that positions The Magician King well above the standard fantasy fare.”
San Francisco Chronicle

“Grossman expands his magical world into a boundless enchanted universe, and his lively characters navigate it with aplomb.”
The New Yorker

“Grossman is brilliant at creating brainy, distinct, flawed, complex characters, and nearly as good at running them through narrative gauntlets that inventively tweak the stories that generations have grown up on.”
The Portland Oregonian

The Magician King, the immensely entertaining new novel by Lev Grossman, manages to be both deep and deeply enjoyable.”
Chicago Sun-Times

“Readers who have already enjoyed The Magicians should lose no time in picking up The Magician King. For those who haven’t, read both books: Grossman’s work is solid, smart, and engaging adult fantasy.”
The Miami Herald

“Now that Harry Potter is through in books and films, grown-up fans of the boy wizard might want to give this nimble fantasy series a try.”
New York Post

“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.”
Product Details
ISBN: 9780143131434
ISBN-10: 0143131435
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: November 29th, 2016
Pages: 432
Language: English
Series: Magicians Trilogy