As young adult fiction goes The Magician is okay but needs some work. Even though it is fantasy the chances of a fifteen-year-old killing a millennia old giant lizard seems kind of slim. The weak plot is helped some by a subplot that is pretty good and characters that are interesting and funny. As a sequel it does not hold up to the first book in the series, The Alchemyst.
What makes this series work is the setting of Earth where magic is very much alive. The series also brings legends, gods, and goddesses out of fiction and puts them beside famous people from history, who are themselves often immortal. For anyone interested in mythology this combination comes off as pretty clever.
While the main plot is fairly weak it does pick up the story where the first book left off and continues the plot through well. The big issue I have with this book is it doesn’t feel like it was really needed. It could have easily been condensed into just a few chapters. The pacing also has some issues as the action doesn’t really get going until well into the story when we meet Nidhogg. When the tale finally does get going it doesn’t hold up to the giant battle in Hecate’s Shadowrealm from the first book. Scott would have been served better to combine this book with another installment in the series then have it stand alone.