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The Magician King by Lev Grossman

cover of magician king lev grossman

Reviewed for The British Fantasy Society

Somewhere in these pages was a story I could have loved, with characters I cared about. But both got lost amidst the relentless world-hopping and cumulative misogyny. What a shame.

I really liked The Magicians. Still do. It took the childhood stories that shaped me, added clever, modern writing and created a new classic. In this sequel we’re back with the same characters, now kings and queens of Fillory. But Quentin’s a bit bored, and fancies some adventure…

Before long he’s messed things up and ends up back in the real world. He and Julia get a road trip across the globe while they try to return to Fillory, crossing through Julia’s old haunts to a beautifully described, magical Venice. For a while the book was great…

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Welcome

Due to some late night messing around on WordPress without supervision, I got water on it locked out of my old blog for a few weeks. Don’t mix droopy eyelids with WordPress, kids.  So I finally had some impetus to move to this domain, which I had parked for when I felt clever and special enough to use my own name. Um. Well. I feel more dishevelled and out-of-sorts than either of those things, but fake it til you make it, as Socrates said.

bill ted and socrates. yes i know i meant aristotle

Of course, minutes after I’d got this place set up I regained access to my old site – but I’m comfy now. And I did something to the css that I don’t understand but am very proud of. So I’m staying here. Welcome!

I’ve moved my old posts and comments over already, and I’ve added in links to my reviews that live elsewhere. There will be more of those soon – I’ll soon be reviewing at Slacker Heroes three times a month, which I’m very chuffed about, cos that’s where all the cool kids hang out. And me.

What with Slacker Heroes, my latest parcel from the British Fantasy Society, and my ongoing Amazon addiction (my Kindle is a hungry beast) I have lots of reading to do this month. Read read read. Write write write. I failed CampNano last month – did you? –  but it did what I wanted it to do, which was remind me that I can write fast and write fast I did. Am. Looks like I will have a finished version* of this story by the end of next week and then I can start prettying it up. Read read read. Write write write.

(*I hate the word draft today. ‘Version’ will do nicely instead, plus it reminds me of The Lemonheads)

I’ve already encountered the first book so bad I won’t review it (it’s another writer’s baby, so I would feel like such a bitch if I publicly slandered it, even though it was v dire), and thankfully discovered Lev Grossman whose awesomeness totally made up for the bad book. I was sent The Magician King, but decided to pick up The Magicians and read that first to get the context. Boy am I glad I did  – Lev and I clearly read the same books growing up, and he has built a world where all the cool bits of, say, Narnia  or Tom’s Midnight Garden are real and even grown-ups can get there . I’d hate to be too old to visit magical lands.

Reviews of both ‘The Magicians’ and ‘The Magician King’ coming soon, as well as a post that was already brewing on which books I (and Lev Grossman, maybe?) loved when I was younger and haunt me now I’m creating a world of my own. Mine’s more graffiti’d railway bridges  than grandfather clocks, but I feel those echoes when I write, nonetheless.

Thanks for coming over to say hi to me in my new place. Leave the welcome gifts on the table – yes, I’ll take that beer, thanks, how kind – and feel free to look around. Ignore that New Smell, it’ll wear off soon.

 

 

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