If the first one ("The Magicians") was a high three (like a 3.5), this one was more of a straight-up three. I should've known - the sequel is rarely as good as the first one. Still, it kept me engaged and wanting more - perhaps that was the problem, I was always wanting a bit more than it offered. My friend Ann is right --- unexpected graphic rape scene is kind of a downer. The ending was also a bit dissatisfying for me. It's kind of a bummer - I was really looking forward to reading this. With all that said, don't let the primarily negative review mislead you --- it still was good and a solid 3 out of 5 stars. I was just hoping for better.