In Naomi Novik’s ‘Golden Enclaves’, magic math actually makes sense

One of the signs that something is terribly wrong with society is when students emerge from its elite educational institutions damaged and confused – if they pass at all.

In the third installment of her best-selling Scholomance trilogy, Golden enclavesNaomi Novik sends Galadriel “El” Higgins, her protagonist from A deadly education and The last graduate, into the messy wizarding community of adults after (mostly) beating the rigged game of her deadly magical school. Novik’s particular strength is in writing worlds in which the mechanics make sense—the mathematics of power, the economics of magic, the politics of institutions—even as they offer dark echoes of our own dysfunctional reality.

We’ll see how much of her nuanced world-building remains intact when the series, adapted by Universal, makes its big screen debut.

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