New York Times Book Critic and author of 'The Magicians' and 'The Magicians King'
I was born in 1969, the son of two English professors, and grew up in Lexington, MA, a suburb of Boston where the first battle of the American Revolution was fought and absolutely nothing has happened since. I graduated from college in 1991 with a degree in literature and spent several aimless years wandering around reading and temping and trying and failing to learn various foreign languages while my cleverer classmates accumulated money and houses and such. Then I spent three years in a Ph.D. program in comparative literature before I realized that it was totally not working out, and that a career in comparing literatures was not going to happen for me.
So I moved to New York City and, being totally unqualified for anything else, I did Web production work for five years. On the side I was writing magazine articles, mostly about books and technology. In 2002 I was hired by Time magazine to write about books and technology full-time. The New York Times very nicely said that I’m “among this country’s smartest and most reliable critics.” I’ve also written for Salon, The Village Voice, The Wall Street Journal, Wired, Entertainment Weekly, The Believer, Lingua Franca, the New York Times, and many other places. Once in a while I even show up on NPR.
I published my first novel, Warp, in 1997; my second, Codex, came out in 2004 and became an international bestseller. My third novel, The Magicians, was published in 2009 and became a New York Times bestseller. The New Yorker named it one of the best books of 2009, and it’s been published in more than 20 countries. The sequel, The Magician King, which came out in 2011, was a Times bestseller as well. In August of 2011 I won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer.
I live in Brooklyn with my wife and two daughters, in a creaky old house.