So, after reading Golden Compass and The Subtle Knife (His Dark Materials, Book 2), I went on to read The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, Book 3), 1st edition, even though I wasn’t as impressed with The Subtle Knife (His Dark Materials, Book 2) as I had hoped I would be.
In truth, I had difficulty finishing The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, Book 3), 1st edition, though I did read on until the end. Similar to The Subtle Knife (His Dark Materials, Book 2), the book seemed like the author just made everything up as he went along. The strange wheeled mulefa people that Mary meets up with, Father Carlos’ quest to go kill Lyra, the angels, Metatron, Lyra’s relationship with both her mother and father, Mrs. Coulter’s duplicity, the world of the dead, setting the ghosts free, the harpies, it was all just too much! And yes Pullman does eventually pull it all together in the end, Lyra’s “fall” happens anyway and the entire fantasy saga turns into a coming of age story almost at the last minute. There are way too many difficult questions about God here for a child to be reading or even for a high-school age child to be reading, in my opinion, and too much confusion about angels and ghosts and daemons and souls. It’s almost as if the book tried to tackle too much – as if book two didn’t do enough and so book three came in to sweep up all the broken pieces.
I was not convinced by this story in the same way that Golden Compass has me convinced and transported me into a completely different world and made me want to wish I could be there. There were too many worlds and too many characters and too many big questions in this book and as I said about book two, it’s no wonder they never made a movie out of this book either.