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you were never no locomotive

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The Magicians

The Magicians: A Novel - Lev Grossman

This is the second time that I've attempted to read The Magicians and the second time I've had to put the book down.


The first time, I quit a few paragraphs in, after Quentin (our white, cishet, whiny lead male character) is lamenting about how is friend Julia has essentially "friend zoned him" and his dating his best friend and is therefore unwilling to sleep with him. UGH.


I've made it quite far this time, holding out on the hope that it would get more bearable and manageable and frankly, interesting.


This is surprising to me, considering that this book is lauded as the Harry Potter for adults. It's a Narnian-esque world of sex and drugs - but I find that magic - what seems to be the entire premise of the book, is virtually skimmed over.


Another disappointing fact - where Hogwarts seems to be all inclusive (at least, in terms of magical ability), Brakebills is as elitist as it comes. Rather than focusing on teaching magic, the school and it's students seem to mainly be working on increasing their snobbery.


Perhaps what is most annoying about the text (other than the obnoxious white sexist boy narrative) is the fact that Grossman seems to tell rather than show. Granted, I haven't read it all, but I've read enough of Quentin's school years to know that they are barely brushed upon - there is a lot of "And then, it was surprisingly their next year in school."


Also - I'm only going to point out that the characters have sex as arctic wolves at one point. That really needs no further discussion.


I really wanted to give this book a try and give it a second chance. Unfortunately, I find it extremely underwhelming and not worth reading.