Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Book Review: The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell

The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell book cover and review
The Last Magician creates a unique, magical world full of wonder and a lot of danger.

Esta can travel through time with the help of a stone in a bracelet she wears.  Professor Lachlan has been like a father to her and has taught her everything she needs to know to survive in other time periods and return safely. She is a master thief, and her ability to slow time helps her immensely.

New York City is different than the one we are familiar with.  There is a barricade, called "The Brink" that keeps everyone with magical powers from crossing the river and leaving Manhattan.  If they do, their magic is stripped, sometimes causing their death. "The Order" is a group of men who are bound and determined to uphold The Brink and rid the city of anyone with magic. Esta has been training for one, all important mission--to return to 1902 and steal a book that will allow the destruction of The Brink.

The setup is complex, and I missed a few things, I think.  It took me a while to "get it" and I probably should have gone back and re-read the beginning again.  But this is a looooong book, so I just went with it. Once Esta went back to 1902 it was very exciting, although I thought at times the book dragged.  The action was interrupted by constant reiterating of points we already knew.  How awful The Brink is, how devious certain characters are, how determined Esta is to betray everyone in 1902. Somewhere some of that could have been cut.

The ending is excited and unexpected.  The reader really has no idea what is going to happen, which is wonderful.  This episode does have some closure, but then we are thrown right back into the conflict and danger, only to be left hanging -- waiting for the next installment.

I hesitate to read books with a lot of magic because sometimes things just become too easy if every problem is solved by its use.  However, The Last Magician has enough interesting rules about magic and the way it is used never feels like an easy out.

My teen book club chose this one for December, and I'm looking forward to hearing their thoughts.  I would recommend The Last Magician to any readers who enjoy fantasy and alternate worlds.

Published by Simon Pulse, July 18, 2017
Copy obtained from the library
500 pages

Rating: 4/5

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1 comment:

  1. A 500 page YA book?! That's a lot (probably too much) of magic for me :-)


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