- Series: Magic 2.0 (Book 1)
- Paperback: 372 pages
- Publisher: 47North (March 18, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1612184715
- ISBN-13: 978-1612184715
- Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.5 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1,256 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,625 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Off to Be the Wizard (Magic 2.0) Paperback – March 18, 2014
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About the Author
Scott Meyer grew up in the small town of Sunnyside, Washington. He began his career in humor by working as a stand-up comedian and radio personality, a highlight of which was participating as the opening act in Weird Al Yankovic’s Running with Scissors tour. Following a long stint touring the United States and Canada, Scott settled down in Orlando, Florida, where he works on his ongoing comic strip, Basic Instructions. Off to be the Wizard is his first novel.
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Top customer reviews
What gave rise to these three phases? The first phase, wanting to like it but not, was due to the writing. I'm not sure if this is Meyer's first full-length novel or not, but prose in the first 20% or so of the book is flat and boring. Meyer uses lots of passive voice and very monotone descriptions. Imagine someone uninterestingly describing something that might be interesting if not for their boring description, and you'll have the right idea. Eventually, and thankfully, Meyer finds his writer's voice and the prose really becomes a pleasure to read. There's a lot of dry wit and it really is very charming.
The second phase, not wanting to like it but liking it anyway, is due to Meyer's lack of deep research into Medieval England, where our protagonist finds himself. In the age of Wikipedia, I was a bit disappointed that Meyer seemed to pretty well write Medieval England based on his idea of it. The locals of the time speak fairly modern English, which was the main thing that irked me, and didn't seem too put off at seeing things like saran wrap or sequin robes. This really messed with my suspension of disbelief.
However, as I continued reading I hit the third phase, acceptance on the books own terms. Off To Be The Wizard clearly wasn't meant to be a serious treatise on Medieval England, and though Meyer does make some very good critiques on various issues in the book, neither was it meant to be a parody. It's simply a good, fun book, with some silly moments and lots of good humor. Once I accepted that, I couldn't put it down.
So do I like this book? Well, I had already purchased the next in the series by the time I'd gotten to 95% of Off To Be The Wizard, and I eagerly look forward to starting that one next.
It took me a few pages to get the feel for Scott Meyer's writing style. Initially I thought the beginning was a little awkward and it got better after the first chapter. But after finishing the book and re-reading the first few pages, I realize that I just needed those few pages to adjust. So if you aren't sure, at least make it through the first two chapters before deciding.
My reading of this book slightly annoyed my family, because I would frequently laugh at it, but then couldn't tell them why it was funny, because I didn't want to give them any spoilers. I will definitely be passing this along to my teenager, and I recommend it to anyone who identifies in some form or fashion as a geek &/or nerd.
Amazon only let me choose from "No," "Some," or "Explicit" for sexual content. I would have chosen somewhere between "No," and "Some" if they had finer selection options. There are innuendoes and references to explicit writing, but there is not really any sexual content within the book. Most of the innuendoes are on a level where young children would miss them completely, (please don't take that as a recommendation of this book for young children) but older children, teenagers, and those of us who still feel 12 on the inside will find them quite funny.
The violence is fairly minor and essential to the plot.
(FYI I won this as an e-book in a goodreads giveaway.)
This was my first purchase of a Kindle in Motion book. The premise seems neat, and the indexing features would have been neat for searching if I'd forgotten something, except I forgot they even existed. The illustrations and animations are novel and add a lot of character... If they weren't distractingly inconsistent with the story. It would describe a scene one way, and the companion image would show something notably different. It gave me the feeling the illustrator had a general idea of the setting, but hadn't read the scene for specifics.
The other KiM issue is that it completely disables font/background palette changes. While the parchment and other styles of background textures were neat, I primarily read in darker conditions and overall always prefer high contrast (white text on black). That made reading this book quite literally painful at times.