I promise to write a decent review later on but for now I'll say a few things.
The Magicians is often described as Harry Potter meets Chronicles of Narnia. While I do see elements that are similar to the two series (wizard boarding school, magical land in an alternate world, etc.) I would like to think that it had a certain uniqueness to it as well. For one, the overall mood of the book was depressing. I don't think I've been more upset over a book's ending than this, so much so that I couldn't bring myself to pick up a new book to read for WEEKS because I was still reeling over the outcome. Secondly, unlike the Pevensie kids and Mr. Potter, Quentin Coldwater is one difficult main character to like. He is whiny, unhappy, idiotic and even dishonorable. He is like that overly entitled fresh graduate who thought that the world was his oyster only to find out that reality is much, much harder than what he perceived. There is no significant growth in his character aside from his moments of realization and regret but by that time it was already too late.
I can't say that I enjoyed the story apart from their time at Brakebills. This was a difficult read for me for the most part. It was dark and uncomfortable but I still consider it one of the best books I've ever read. I don't always require a happy ending in order to have high regards for a book. This is NOT a fairy tale
where you root for the main character, and maybe that's why I was so drawn to it in the first place. The hero isn't some noble, gifted wizard. For me the magic wasn't even the focal point of the book. It was just an honestly portrayed story of early adulthood and the stupid decisions that one makes for the pursuit of pleasure and power.
It's been almost a year since I finished this book yet I still remember the events, the details and my feelings throughout my entire reading experience. That's how I know that this book will stay with me for a long time.