My review will follow the publisher’s blurb :
From Unhooked author Lisa Maxwell comes a captivating new world filled with magic and deception, about a girl who must travel back in time to find a mysterious book that could save her future.
Stop the Magician.
Steal the book.
Save the future.
In modern day New York, magic is all but extinct. The remaining few who have an affinity for magic—the Mageus—live in the shadows, hiding who they are. Any Mageus who enters Manhattan becomes trapped by the Brink, a dark energy barrier that confines them to the island. Crossing it means losing their power—and often their lives.
Esta is a talented thief, and she’s been raised to steal magical artifacts from the sinister Order that created the Brink. With her innate ability to manipulate time, Esta can pilfer from the past, collecting these artifacts before the Order even realizes she’s there. And all of Esta’s training has been for one final job: traveling back to 1902 to steal an ancient book containing the secrets of the Order—and the Brink—before the Magician can destroy it and doom the Mageus to a hopeless future.
But Old New York is a dangerous world ruled by ruthless gangs and secret societies, a world where the very air crackles with magic. Nothing is as it seems, including the Magician himself. And for Esta to save her future, she may have to betray everyone in the past.
If you are looking for a great urban fantasy, magic, time travel type novel… Look no further.
The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell is what you need.
It’s categorised as a Young Adult novel, but this 40 something reader loved getting lost within its pages. When I picked it up I had just finished reading a few real dark, troubling novels and this was a delight for the senses – a cleansing of the pallet so to speak. I expected it to entertain, transport and surprise me; It didn’t disappoint.
The idea of magicians or those with heightened abilities being trapped in New York is clever. It has a slight claustrophobic feel, packed with deceit, historical elements and (what I enjoyed the most) the art of the con. Although longer than the usual books I read, The Last Magician needed its length because there is so much going on. The length gave it a very nice gradual pace, setting the stage for devious twists and suspenseful goings on.
While in Lisa Maxell’s New York, I loved the historical names she dropped as well as the little informational nuggets here and there. (Google was my friend)
I’d recently seen this title on a list of book recommendations for those who enjoyed the Harry Potter series. Personally, I haven’t even finished book one of the Harry Potter series yet, I plowed through The Last Magician within a few days. If my sleuthing is correct, this book is part of a Duology !
Some other reviewers thought that there were too many plot twists. I would tend to disagree. The twists and story line kept me reading and when you factor in time travel, it’s the ultimate storm. What about the characters ? Well, I enjoyed Esta. She is definitely a bad ass thief on a mission – with the added bonus of being able to manipulate time ! Now there is a super power that I’d definitely be keen on having.
I wish this book would have been around when I was a teenager. The library of my childhood was dismal and lacking in fun. That is probably why I enjoy reading Young Adult books so much now. This was my first Lisa Maxwell book and it won’t be my last !
On a side note, if you have the time – stop by The Last Magician’s website for some extra fun.
The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell – available now
Published by Simon Pulse
Grades 9 and up
A copy of The Last Magician was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.