In the Books Section:
Discussed July 2016
By Lev Grossman
Buy The Magicians from Amazon.com
Selected Dramatis Personae:
- Quentin Coldwater – primary protagonist
- Alice Quinn – friend and lover of Quentin
- Eliot Waugh – “the gay guy”
- Josh Hoberman – overweight comic relief
- Penny – with the Mohawk haircut
- Martin Chatwin – aka “The Beast”
- Ember and Umber – the Rams of Fillory
- Henry Fogg – Dean of Brakebills
- Prof. Myakovsky – Brakebills South
- The Magicians has been called “modern-day fantasy for grown-ups”. What’s your opinion about this?
- Many reviewers consider Fantasy to be “escapist literature”. In contrast, some reviewers have almost (but not quite) labeled The Magicians as “anti-escapist”. What’s your opinion about this?
- What do you think about the personalities of the leading characters (the students at Brakebills)? Are they realistic? Heroic? Believable?
- How would you describe the overall storyline of The Magicians? Does each of the four Parts seem to have its own “theme”?
- How does Grossman handle the concept of “magic” in the novel? Does it “make sense” to you? Do you think “magic” could be interpreted as representing other concepts?
- Brakebills vs. Hogwarts: what’s the difference?
- Why Fillory? How does it affect the lives of Brakebills students, faculty, and graduation? And what about the Chatwins and their relationship to that not-so-imaginary realm?
- How well does Grossman handle LGBTQ issues?
- If you have seen it, how do you think the SyFy Channel series compares (or contrasts) with the novel?
- Based on your reading of The Magicians, do you intend to (or have you already) read its sequels (The Magician King and The Magician’s Land)?