64 pages • 2 hours readRainbow Rowell
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Chapter Summaries & Analyses
Content Warning: This section of the guide includes discussion of a suicide attempt.
In September, 18-year-old Simon Snow leaves the children’s home where he spent his summer and returns to Watford School of Magicks. He began studying magic there when he was 11. Although Simon is the Chosen One, he finds it difficult to control his magic, which “goes off like a bomb instead of flowing through [him] like a fucking stream or however it works for everybody else” (5). During his previous years at Watford, Simon had many adventures with his best friend, Penelope (Penny) Bunce, and girlfriend, Agatha Wellbelove, such as slaying a dragon and fighting a chimera. However, his roommate and rival, the unflappable Baz, seems to despise him.
Simon grew up in the Normal world. When he was 11, the Mage, headmaster of Watford and leader of the magical world, told him that he was “the most powerful magician the World of Mages has ever known” (17). The Mage views Simon as a weapon and gives him private training to prepare him for his destiny. The mages are at war with a mysterious entity known as the Insidious Humdrum that abducted Simon and Penelope last semester.
By Rainbow Rowell