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The Magician's Land | Lev Grossman | Review




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, and a new Fillory--but casting it will set in motion a chain of events that will bring Earth and Fillory crashing together. To save them he will have to risk sacrificing everything.


No longer living in the land he loves, Quentin heads back to Brakebills to where it all began. There he works as a professor, until one day he's thrown into yet another adventure. This time he's taken back to places he visited in his younger days, and he's reminded of those loved ones he's lost, those he's left behind.

Back in Fillory, the remaining kings and queens have their own quests. Fillory is dying, and they have to save it. Coming at it from both sides, Quentin and his have to find a way to save the land the love, even if that means giving up everything.

While the first book is mainly from Quentin's perspective, and the second adds in Julia's, The Magician's Land brings in the thoughts and perspective from Eliot, Quentin's school friend and High King of Fillory. While Eliot is the intelligent one, the immature one, the crazy one, he still loves his land, and he and the others left in Fillory work hard to fix it. It was fun reading from Eliot's perspective, as he's a character that I enjoyed in the series. 

The creatures in this book (and series) are so creative, and yet so simple at times. Grossman's writing and creativity shines through and it makes for an exciting and vivid read.

This final book is a lot shorter than the first two in the series, but it's still packed with great characters, plot twists, adventures and creativity. I thought it was a brilliant way to end a fantastic series, and while I will miss reading about Quentin and Fillory, it was a joy to read.

If you're after a series about magic, about friendship, about love and loss, about creating your own way in the world (or in another), or you just love a good fantasy story, pick up the first in this series, The Magicians, and have a read.

You can read my review on BB of the first in this series, The Magicians, here,  and the second in this series, The Magician King, here. 

Image from Goodreads. 

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