I read the prequel to this book, The Magicians, when it first came out and while it was an entertaining read, I wasn’t “wowed” by it. The Magicians was marketed as a darker and more mature version of Harry Potter. I think that was a little too ambitious. Anyway, I was curious to see where Grossman went with the story and his characters so I picked up the audiobook from the library. It took a little while for me to appreciate the narrator, but he did a great job capturing the voices of different characters and moving the story along. I got into the book quickly and was curious to see where things would end.
Quentin is one of the kings of the magical world known as Fillory. He has been eager and ready for an adventure since he was declared one of the Fillorian kings. As always seems to be the case when people are desperately in need of a change, adventure manages to find Quentin. Quentin and his friend, Julia (a queen of Fillory), set out in search of a distant island and find themselves suddenly transported back to Earth – a place neither of them wants to be. The story goes back and forth between the present (as Quentin and Julia try desperately to get back to Fillory) and the past, which recounts how Julia acquired her magical powers in the first place.
Grossman does a great job building anticipation to see where the story will take you. There were some parts that could be a little monotonous, but overall I really enjoyed it. The way the story ended, I’m curious if there’s a third book on the way. If so, I’ll be sure to pick it up.