Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Magicians

I left off at p. 206, returning this to the library after weeks of it languishing unread at my bedside. I'll check it out again in a while, because I read this blog post, I get excited about it all over again. Helen describes the mood better than I could, but in short, the plot follows a New York City teen who is inducted into a school of magic called Brakebills that is much darker, more adult and more abstract than Hogwarts.

p. 71: "In the end he went home for five days. And for a moment, as he was climbing the front stairs, and the good old familiar home smell descended on him, a lethal enchantment compounded of cooking and paint and Oriental rugs and dust, when he saw his mother's toothy, exasperated smile and his dad's hale, stubbly good humor, he became the person that he used to be around them again, and he felt the gravitational pull of the little kid he once was and in some unswept back corner of his soul always would be."

p. 127: "In the nineteenth century Brakebills had appointed a librarian with a highly Romantic imagination who had envisioned a mobile library in which the books fluttered from shelf to shelf like birds, reorganizing themselves spontaneously under their own power in response to searches. For the first few months the effect was said to be have been quite dramatic. A painting of the scene survived as a mural behind the circulation desk, with enormous atlases soaring around the place like condors.
But the system turned out to be totally impractical. The wear and tear on the spines alone was too costly, and the books were horribly disobedient. The librarian had imagined he could summon a given book to perch on his hand just by shouting out its call number, but in actuality they were just too willful, and some were actively predatory."

No comments: