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The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman
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The Amber Spyglass (2000)

by Philip Pullman

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: His Dark Materials (3)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
18,505318123 (4.01)134
  1. 52
    The Neverending Story by Michael Ende (Leishai)
    Leishai: Also a story about fantasy with another world
  2. 20
    Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell: A Novel by Susanna Clarke (thebookpile)
  3. 20
    Sabriel by Garth Nix (Morteana)
  4. 10
    Cold Fire by Kate Elliott (Jen448)
  5. 21
    The City of Dreaming Books by Walter Moers (Leishai)
  6. 00
    The Once and Future King by T. H. White (themulhern)
    themulhern: This book follows a similar trajectory to the HDM trilogy, starting out fairly light and bright and growing gradually more somber, mature, and troubled.
  7. 11
    Lycidas by Christoph Marzi (Leishai)
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» See also 134 mentions

English (305)  French (2)  German (2)  Spanish (2)  Italian (2)  Swedish (1)  Croatian (1)  Danish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (317)
Showing 1-5 of 305 (next | show all)
Love this series -- even better the second time around. This series can be enjoyed at many levels. The plot is quick-paced and the world building is fabulous. But on this second time reading this series, I tried to understand more the themes of Good vs. Evil and Eve, the Garden of Eden and the Serpent. I have to admit, it might take a 3rd reading for me to really get the gist of what Pullman is saying. This would be an excellent series to discuss with a book club! ( )
  jmoncton | Jul 25, 2018 |
I liked this book less than the first, but far more than the second. For one thing, there were fewer people I viscerally wanted to punch in the face (that's in the good column), but I still missed the Gyptians and the polar settings of the first book.

I liked how Mrs. Coulter's character got more complicated, even if I felt in the end that I still didn't really understand her. I got pretty into Mary and the muleta sub-plot, though I wish they'd contributed a bit more in the end. I was, to be honest, a little squicked by Will and Lyra's romance in the end -- it felt a bit out of nowhere, and in my mind the characters were a little young for all that, but maybe I am misremembering how old they were supposed to be.

I probably could have left things at just having read the first book and been perfectly happy, though I do like the ending for Lyra -- that was pretty satisfying. ( )
  greeniezona | Jun 24, 2018 |
3.5 stars ( )
  mitabird | Jun 10, 2018 |
re-read :'3
( )
  basilisky | Jun 3, 2018 |
I take back my rants about the Chronicles of Narnia. Yes, Lewis got a bit heavy-handed in his anglo-centric retelling of Christian mythology. It was the height of subtly compared to Pullman.

It just makes it worse that I actually agree with Pullman's thesis. Across the three novels, I think he's trying to suggest that empirical exploration, focusing on here-and-now is the real purpose of life. He seems to have more distaste for religion than I do, but still - we have a lot in common, philosophically. But that wasn't enough to redeem this trilogy. I found this whole thing terribly disappointing. I'd hoped that, in the final book, he would address some of the really interesting ideas he'd hinted at, but it was not to be.

For instance - while Lyra spends much of the book lying her way out of trouble, she later has encounters where truth is more important. But the author never does anything with that, it falls to the wayside with most of the other interesting plot threads and themes. We're told that Asriel's great work will fail, but never explore the meaning of that failure, or what happens to those involved. Do the worlds go back to normal? Has this three book epic changed anything? There's no way to know.

This book, like the the trilogy, fails as literature - the plot is scattered and limp, and the characters aren't enough to make up for it - and fails as a screed. I think I see what the author's trying to preach, but only because I'm in the choir. I don't think this book is going to change any minds, and it's not a particularly satisfying sermon for the already converted.

P.S. Is it just me, or is the Author replacing a Christian-type god with the divinity of Dust? How else would Lyra have been able to read the alethiometer by Grace, then have to learn it the usual way once "everything was done"? Perhaps that's just a plot hole I'm trying to explain away. Goodness knows this book is full of them. ( )
  hopeevey | May 19, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 305 (next | show all)
And as the bumpy journey among these dark materials comes to an end, there is the most moving of scenes: all fantasy subdued and only human frailty revealed in the real world of Oxford's Botanic Garden.
 

» Add other authors (22 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Pullman, Philipprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bailey, PeterIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bützow, HeleneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bruno, FrancescoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pullman, PhilipNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rohmann, EricCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
O tell of His might, O sing of His grace,
Whose robe is the light, whose canopy space,
His chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form,
And dark is His path on the wings of the storm.

    Robert Grant, from Hymns Ancient and Modern.
O stars,
isn't it from you that the lover's desire for the face
of his beloved arises? Doesn't his secret insight
into her pure features come from pure constellations?

    Ranier Maria Rilke, The Third Elegy.
    From The Selected Poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke (transl. Stephen Michell)
Fine vapors escape from whatever is doing the living.
The night is cold and delicate and full of angels
Pounding down the living. The factories are all lit up,
The chime goes unheard.
We are together at last, though far apart.

    John Ashbery, The Ecclesiast.
    From River and Mountains.
Dedication
First words
In a valley shaded with rhododendrons, close to the snow line, where a stream milky with melt-water splashed and where doves and linnets flew among the immense pines, lay a cave, half-hidden by the crag above and the stiff heavy leaves that clustered below.
Quotations
I used to be a nun, you see. I thought physics could be done to the glory of God, till I saw there wasn't any God at all and that physics was more interesting anyway. The Christian religion is a very powerful and convincing mistake, that's all.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
In the astonishing finale to the His Dark Materials trilogy, Lyra and Will are in unspeakable danger. With help from Iorek Byrnison the armored bear and two tiny Gallivespian spies, they must journey to a dank and gray-lit world where no living soul has ever gone. All the while, Dr. Mary Malone builds a magnificent Amber Spyglass. An assassin hunts her down, and Lord Asriel, with a troop of shining angels, fights his mighty rebellion, in a battle of strange allies—and shocking sacrifice.

As war rages and Dust drains from the sky, the fate of the living—and the dead—finally comes to depend on two children and the simple truth of one simple story.
Haiku summary
Heroine suffers.
But in the end it's only
Midi-chlorians.
(Noisy)

No descriptions found.

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Lyra and Will find themselves at the center of a battle between the forces of the Authority and those gathered by Lyra's father, Lord Asriel.

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