The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, Book 3) by Philip Pullman

Posted on 4 May 2009. Filed under: Book Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Amber Spyglass is the final book in the His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman. I have read all three books and find them all fascinating. The first book Northern Lights was made into a movie with the title of The Golden Compass and I believe they are planning to film the second book The Subtle Knife as well as The Amber Spyglass but I haven’t been able to find any confirmation of this. I did find the best ‘404 page not found’ ever. If you visit His Dark Materials movie page, scroll all the way down to the bottom and click on the link ‘His Dark Materials movie’ you will be taken to it. Stay there for a couple of minutes and just read. I think it’s great fun and I challenge everyone to give me a better one.

This is meant to be a review, but it’s hard to review a book where I totally object to the key feature as I can’t mention it and rant about it in case of spoilers. I don’t want to give spoilers for those who haven’t read it so I’ll just make mention of a few things including the movie.

I love most of the ideas in all three books. I find the idea of having a daemon absolutely fabulous and would really like one myself. The idea of parallel worlds has been written about many, many times and this time has been done really nicely. I like the idea of talking armoured bears. The writing is really good. Philip Pullman is a really talented author and I look forward to reading more by him.

If you’ve seen the movie, you absolutely must read the books. I saw the movie first, with my kids, and was totally enchanted. My kids were terribly upset and told me how much better the books were. They ranted and raved about it and how I just had to read the books. They finally made their way to the top of my reading pile and I had to agree with them. The books are definitely better. However, the books can’t show you the size of Iorek Byrnison compared with Lyra. They can’t show you the alethiometer. They can, and do, describe them, but some of us just can’t visualise this by ourselves. The special effects in the movie were fabulous, I particularly liked the scenes where Lyra was running with some other kids and their daemons, something else I found hard to visualise.

My recommendation is to read the books and then see the movie, not always possible, but I do recommend it.


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