©2014 Scott Meyer (P)2014 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.
Whilst all the great characters and nerdy pop culture references were back in this sequel, it lacked the pace of the first book. Lots of required scene building meant that the speed of the action was slow at time. However, I did enjoy this sequel and continue to thoroughly enjoy the performance. Daniels brings ALL the characters to life. I will definitely listen to the last book in the series!
I get nervous when I really love the first book in a series. Second installments run the risk of being boring, overly repetitive, or losing the thesis begun in the first work. My anxiety was, thankfully, unfounded. Martin, Gwen, and Phillip have returned, accompanied by a slew of new characters.
This installment flows incredibly well from book one. It does pick up almost exactly where the first left off, which was very well done. Old secondary characters are woven into the fabric, with new ones taking on the major plot lines. The whole thing is rather seamless, actually.
As expected, the book is full of pop culture and geek references- not quite as many as book one, but a number of spots made me rather happy. I repeat my inherent bias stated in my review of Book One: I am very much in Meyer's intended demographic with this book. If you aren't a member of the geeky/techie/1970s-1990s set, you probably won't dig this all that much. Who knows though.
I am rather surprised at some of the negative reviews, one in particular. I didn't think that the romantic parts were embarrassing or sophomoric in the least- I think they were actually pretty spot on for the characters. Certainly not as if a 12 year old girl wrote it. Unless, of course, as a 30 year old man I have the romantic maturity of a 12 year old girl- which I am certainly not discounting.
Luke Daniels did a great job with the narration once more. I laughed out loud a number of times and couldn't stop smiling. The only complaint I have was the book was over too fast for my taste, 12 hours isn't long enough to spend with Martin, Phillip, and Gwen.
I can't wait for book three. Hurry up, Scott.
"Martin and Philip's Atlantis Adventure"
Yes, but I'll give it a few. Got to keep the story fresh. This is an easy listen with a funny storyline and likeable characters.
The whole Atlantis thing - 100:1 male to female ratio and the whole women wear the pants scene while the guys are fired up to clean and get their hair done. Different take on roles makes the story funny in a kooky way.
Luke Daniels is a flat out pro. He made this book flow. I bought Spell or High Water this morning and just finished it - almost 11 hours of audiobook and I feel refreshed. The author made the right choice in hooking up with Luke Daniels.
Is Martin up to the challenge of winning Gwen's heart? Stay tuned to see what gets stuck in Martin's mouth - Gwen's tongue or his foot!
Get this book. The price is right, Luke Daniels comes up strong and Philip wakes up next to an "untraditional" vixen and doesn't even think about pulling a coyote.
Another great offering from the Magic 2.0 series. While not quite as funny as the first (that would be a tall order) it still delivers plenty of laughs and fun for the computer nerd in all of us. Well written, witty and full of surprises “Spell or High Water” is a fun listen.
Mr Daniels makes this book so much more enjoyable with his performance. He really brings it to life.
I was thrilled there was already a second story in this series after I finished "Off to be the Wizard"
Philip is still one of my favorite characters, he gets so passionate about everything, and then Luke Daniels does a great job of getting that point across.
The fact that I could tell just from his performance if Brit the Elder or Brit the Younger was the one talking.
Laugh, a lot, and often.
"SQUID PRO QUO"
IF I SAY IT, AND YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN, THAN IT'S A WORD
In the introduction, we are told that this is to be considered funny and light hearted and not to be taken serious. Which I believe is a great intro to this series. If your looking for some serious Science Fiction or Fantasy, for something dark or mentally challenging, than your in the wrong place. This is the second book in the series and you will be lost if you do not start with the first most excellent book (OFF TO BE THE WIZARD).
SMART PEOPLE DO STUPID THINGS
While I did not enjoy this as well as the first book, (which is not unusual for any series), I still enjoyed it and it was well worth my credit. In places it is extremely funny. Most of the book takes place in Atlantis, which is a pretty cool place to begin with, especially since it is a society run by women. The male attendants are especially funny. I will say that they stayed in Atlantis too long and the whole plot there started to wear thin. That is after several very funny chapters, though. The whole thing with the Brits also got a little old.
ARGUING WITH A DUMB PERSON NEVER WORKS
The side story involving an exiled magician and the FBI agents, turned out to be some of the funniest stuff in the book. Agent Miller is hilarious. I already have book three in my library and I am looking forward to listening to it.
Luke Daniels does a fantastic job. He makes the listening of this ten times better than the reading of this.
"ENTERTAINING and SMART!"
I can't rave enough about how much I enjoyed this audiobook and the first one in the series - Off to Be the Wizard. It's smart, funny, clever, and stimulating without being the least bit depressing or dour. I realize that some people are convinced that quality in writing can only be attained with deep, dark, soul clenching grit and human misery, but they're wrong. There is a huge value to something that engages your mind, AND makes you smile. On top of that, the narration is brilliant and adds so much color and humor it ought to be classified in its own category. Luke Daniels is an elite level audiobook narrator. I just bought book 3, and will eventually purchase Meyer's latest book too.
"A Higher Water Mark for Meyer"
Scott Meyer's Magic 2.0 series builds on an interesting premise: present-day computer geeks, using their programming power to travel through time and create other advantages for themselves, appear to be wizards to the people in the past. In Off to Be the Wizard (OTBTW), the first entry in the series, that location was medieval England. In the follow-up, Spell or High Water (SOHW), the primary locale is Atlantis.
For me, SOHW is one star better than OTBTW in every respect. In my review of the first book, I started by noting that it was as fun and funny as I had hoped, but that it was flawed, and I concluded by noting that I hoped Meyer could improve on those flaws in the sequel that obviously on the way. And indeed he has, addressing exactly the two main problems I had, making this a better book and a better listen (narrator Luke Daniels also improves on my problem with his reading of OTBTW, toning down the voices a little, though not enough).
The main thing on the author's end is that is primarily a time travel story, but one in which nothing anyone does in the past changes the future. While it remains true in SOHW that present day outcomes cannot be altered, SOHW allows for a) a possible explanation somewhere down the road of why that is, and more importantly b) possible changes in the timeline of the past they now inhabit, which influences their actions.
In addition, we are no longer confined to medieval England as our setting. We now also have Atlantis, even though it is a mythical setting rather than an historical one. We also have "wizards" and "sorceresses" in Atlantis for a summit who have come from many times and places in the past and present, and while I still yearned for more of that kind of variety, it was an improvement to have even a little of it.
Now, if Meyer can also work in more variation in the present day places the so-called wizards come from, in addition to more locales in the past (mythical or real), that would be even better. And we don't have to wait to find out -- the third volume in the series, and Unwelcome Quest, just came out.
"Narrator Goes to 11"
Great story. I feel like the narrator was just 1 degree TOO animated... like, hearing a story told by Shaggy from Scooby Doo... After a while, the mewling, whiny voice/character impersonations took on a prepubescent tone—like hearing adults talk in a "but I don't wanna go to bed" voice ALL the time.
Still, it's quite enjoyable.
"Fun sequel to the original"
These books are so fun! The story is another lighthearted adventure written in a quirky and highly entertaining way. I laughed out loud many times. The performance is engaging. I so enjoyed listening to them - they're a great way to unwind from stress!
This series is great. A great take on the whole magic thing. Loved all three in the series.
"Back to being a professional wizard"
The second book in the Magic 2.0 series sees our Wizards moving to Atlantis. Atlantis is a place run by women, who are called sorceresses. Males are relegated to servants who live the good life in return for sexual favours (or, that's how it came across to me).
This follows the similar style of writing and humour from the first book. Unlike the first book, there are two story threads. The first are the Wizards in England/Atlantis and then there is Jimmy's story (the same one from the first book). Both are enjoyable, but Jimmy's is a little predictable.
Atlantis has Brit the Elder and Brit the younger - basically the same person occupying the same time. This then leads on to a lot of Time Travel story lines, which is the main plot for this book.
The reason for the plot was a little weak to me, but the journey was fun so I can let that fall.
The audio again was brilliant.
2nd in series, 1st is stronger IMHO but it's great to meet up with old characters that feel like old friends and hear more about there world, very enjoyable nonsense. Heading for book 3 right now :)
"more of the same "
...but that's a good thing. Excellent narration as usual and a decent plot (though Jimmy's arc felt like a bit of a misfire). It's not as strong as the first in the series but it is fun, with plenty of laugh-out-loud moments.
I must have listen to this series at least 8-9 times anytime I want entertaining this is the book I turn to.
"not as good as the 1st book"
although the narration is good the plot is pro
tracted. I struggled to finish the book. it started quite well but I found the whole plot weak and drawn out. The chase scenes are an example of this. too much filler and not a patch on off to be a wizard. Although I have purchased the 3rd book in the series is doubt I'll read it based on the strength of this. disappointed.
"A less intense, more fun take on the Matrix..."
Loved the first book and have enjoyed the second in the series, although the story line was less appealing to me in the second book. Easy listening with a few laughs and a good dose of cleverness. If you're after something heavy and wrinkle-inducing, it won't be this, but hey, we all need some levity from time to time and this fits the bill for me.
"Possibly the weakest of the series, yet still good"
Seeing the characters introduced in the previous book come back with lots more memorable ones introduced along with a good mix or hilarious moments.
I most certainly would, along with all the other books of this series, the narration is fantastic as always, the humor is spot on and it manages to have a pretty decent story.
Probably Philip, you gotta love that old man wizard voice, hilarious.
Probably the finale, was pretty crazy and I enjoyed it a lot.
Second book in the series, very funny and I'm no expert but think they are well written.
Luke Daniels does such a good job, his English accent could do with some work but he really does do an excellent job at helping you to visualise all these characters. He injects light and shade into the reading and I'm really impressed.
The concept behind this book is just great.
When Martin first looks in the mirror and realizes what is happening
"Reeaa hee hee heerly Phillip!"
The story is pretty good, not as good as the first though. Bit Dan Brown. But I was still entertained and finished it in just a few days. Luke Daniels seems to have gone to the Jim Carey school of overacting in the time between this and the first book which was a little annoying, but not so much that I didn't want to listen anymore.
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