Readers Advisory: Smartphone Wizards In Time & Space

So, I am really really really into the McElroy Brothers, much like a good section of the Internet. And I just love everything they touch (especially their number one product, the podcast/TV series My Brother, My Brother, and Me). So I’ve kind of stumbled into Griffin McElroy’s work for Polygon, including the Cool Games Inc podcast that he co-hosts with Nick Robinson. But, because I can’t consume media right away in its intended primary form, I’ve started by watching animated versions of various CGI segments, including the one below.

And it’s hilarious, and I love Griffin’s adoration for Carly Rae Jepsen (and she really is a stellar artist that deserves more critical love, and here’s “Store” if you’re curious about why Griffin chooses it as The B-Side To Blow Mozart’s Mind With), but can we talk about the initial prompt for a second? Cause it’s time for a readers advisory.

Dude, you asked for time travelling good boys who use their smartphones to convince the locals they are actual wizards? That is an ACTUAL BOOK SERIES PREMISE. THERE IS A SERIES OF ORIGINAL FICTION BASED ON THAT EXACT IDEA. It’s called Magic 2.0 by Scott Meyer, maybe better known as the creator of the webcomic Basic Instructions. Guy discovers the world is a computer program, hacks his phone to control it, ends up going into medieval England to escape his own reality, ends up joining a enclave of wizard nerds, his phone is his wand, and so forth.

I’ve read the first two books and I can vouch for the following: it is very funny, very clever, very aware of the tropes of its genre, and is tailor made for nerds and geeks. Also, thanks for making me look up Magic 2.0 because I actually thought it was a trilogy – but no, a fourth book is coming out this year! Awesome!

I would highly recommend Scott Meyer’s series to people who enjoy Hitchhikers’ Guide To The Galaxy, Red Dwarf, The Magicians, and yes, MBMaM. Note: it is published through 47North, an arm of Amazon’s publishing company, and I would recommend getting a digital book when possible and if preferred, as I’ve had trouble getting paperbacks from 47North that don’t fall apart upon arrival.

If you know any other series, book or otherwise, that fit in the same vein as Magic 2.0, let me know. I’d love to know about them!

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