The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman
The Amber SpyglassLyra and Will return to finish their travels in this final book of His Dark Materials trilogy. They have been separated. Lyra is now with her mother. Mrs. Coulter has lied and cheated all her life. She sees Lyra as her tool to a safe future.
Will is with the angels, Balthamos and Baruch. The witch Serifina Peccula meets up with the bear king, Iorek Byrnison. Mary Malone leaves her world in search of both Lyra and to discover the secret of Dust. Each of these beings has reasons to rescue Lyra from Mrs. Coulter. Will and Lyra also have further work to do to save their respective worlds.
In her dreams Lyra speaks with her old friend Roger. From those dreams, conversations with Will’s father, and later readings with her alethiometer, Will and Lyra begin to learn what the future requires from them. Somehow these children have to defeat the Authority and return Dust to its proper place.
At times I would get confused during this book, but it finally all pulled together. I felt the threads were knotted rather poorly, with some contrived twists and turns to bring all worlds into alignment. Yet the ending has a powerful unexpectedness to it. The other two were stronger books overall but this one is still pleasing and is a fit ending to the saga.
I also have a personal bias against this trilogy. The God I believe in is neither dead or non-existant (I never was quite sure which the author is saying). This is a stated fact throughout this novel in particular, rather than the “assumed” backgrounds found in many fantasy novels. As long as I remembered this is only fiction and someone’s imagination I was fine. If this outlines Pullman’s beliefs, I feel sorry for his lack of a center for his life.