Saturday, November 3, 2007

Phillip Pullman: The Golden Compass

I finished listening to The Golden Compass yesterday afternoon and it was just enchanting. I'm really excited for the movie that is coming out in December because I think it will be beautiful. This was another book I 'read' on CD and I still think it's a great way to read books. I was able to listen to it while doing the dishes, folding laundry, and other mindless house chores. It made the work go much faster, although it did take me longer to listen to it that it would have taken to read the book.

The recording I listened to was read by Pullman himself and they had different people read the character's dialogue. It was fun to hear the book play out with the different voices.

I loved this story. It had elements of both fantasy and reality woven together to make a lovely story and an interesting setting. Lyra is a wonderful character because she is such a mischievous little girl. The book presented things clearly, but with just a hint of mystery, of questions unanswered and the unknown lurking around the corner.

The one complaint I have is that it seems a bit violent for a children's book. Several characters die and there are a couple of violent fights. I wasn't personally bothered but I was surprised at some of the violence. A couple of the main characters die, as well, and I was surprised by the characters reactions... or lack thereof. I would still recommend this book, so it wasn't a big deal, but it was just a little thorn for me. Although, I can see how the book would be very different and not quite as good without these elements, so I'll stop complaining.

Read this book, no matter your age, and let me know what you think.


BookwormBlogger said...


Nice to finally see you've read it! :) I've been following your blog ever since you posted in mine and now I just have to respond.

I loved it too. It didn't take me long to really get into it, and by the end of the book, I was fully engrossed in it. Philip Pullman really managed to create an interesting world, and found it surprisingly deep. I love the idea of their souls manifesting into creatures. That was brilliant.

I also did think it was quite a bit violent for a children's book, but then again so is Harry Potter in the later books, but the difference with those is that they get darker as the series progresses. These seem to be written for older children right from the get go.

I am looking forward to the movie even more now after having finished it. I don't know if you've seen the full trailer yet, but it does look very good. Naturally though, they did change some things and there are some scenes I don't recognize from the book, that they either added from the other books or just wrote it in anyway for the sake of the movie. The alethiometer is also referred to as the Golden Compass instead. Would have preferred if they had kept it as in the book, but hey, it's a movie.

Raspberry said...

Thanks for the comment and your thoughts on this book. I'm also pretty excited for the movie. I'm sure it will be different from the book, but I'm okay with that. Are you going to read the other books in the series?

BookwormBlogger said...

Yeah, I plan to just as soon as I finish my backlog, which will take quite awhile. I have so many in line to read. Everytime I walk into a bookstore, there's always something else I want to buy, hehe.