Level 43 or 44 is preferred, but you'll probably be okay at level 42 or even 41.
You should do ALL of the side quests in all worlds (Grizzleheim and the tough optional quests like Sunken City, Beguiler, and Kensington Park can be skipped). The experience will get you more levels, which means better equipment and spells, and more health and mana.
if you can defeat bosses and street people just fine your ready. i got in at level 38. Low but i defeated the sylvia drake tower all by myself at level 41 which is usually when you get in. that tower is 1/3 of the way finished with ds. I've heard tales of wizards defeating malistare at level 45. Its ablity not quantity of your level.
well now i am a lvl 44 death and in the grand chasm and in the process i have been doing side quest from ms, mb, and krok and i am doing the world of the bears so it might be a while before i get to the final boss in the world.