Top positive review
5 Reasons To Read His Dark Materials
Reviewed in the United States on December 9, 2017
One of the most famous and beloved fantasy book trilogies you can think of. One that has been tried to adapt into a movie, but it failed, as some things (okay, most things!) are probably best left in book form. It’s so epic, I can only compare it to Harry Potter. If you haven’t read it yet, let me see if I can remedy that!
★★★★★ Endless number of stars
His Dark Materials is a sweeping epic that tells of a story bigger than you can imagine, but it’s also a story told through the smallest characters – a story of a world, the fate of which lies in the hands of children. In a way, it’s all about the fight between good and evil, wisdom and darkness, but not in your usual fantasy sense. This is more philosophical than you might have expected it to be, but it’s also so imaginative, so full of adventure and unbelievable details, that you’ll never get bogged down with any of the philosophy. It’s a series that you can eat through a week – no matter how long the books actually are. You won’t sleep, if you have to.
Don’t You Just Wish Your Cat Was Your Daemon??
Daemons are talking animals that are… curiously, they’re part of you. They’re kind of your spirit animal, which also makes up part of your soul. It’s incredibly interesting, cute, and it goes so well with the story! You can talk to it, it will help you and defend you, and even if you’re utterly and completely alone, it will be your companion. It’s likely that by the end of the series, you will find yourself trying to figure out what your daemon would look like. Or maybe even does look like. (more on why I say that – in the actual book!)
There Are Wonders And Mysteries
Obviously, it wouldn’t be cool if I just gave it away to you, now would it. But let me just tell you that there are worlds to explore. That there are reasons the entire world is falling, and you need to find them out. And the reasons are all pretty grand as well. It’s not your typical overused YA tropes either, for example – oh, this or that super power has just decided to thwart the main character and their family, and you need a special snowflake to fix it. No, it’s far better than that! That said, the main character (who is a little girl) IS special, and she’s IS key to the saving of the world, but she’s no special snowflake. We’re getting to that in the next point.
The Characters Have Flaws, They’re Not Perfect
Having imperfect characters is great! Especially so, because it prevents the aforementioned ‘special snowflake’ syndrome. The main female character, Lyra, is as flawed as can be – she lies, she’s not loyal, she’s subject to other people’s manipulation. She is also ridiculously dramatic, and it’s maintained throughout the entire series in the way she talks (I specifically loved that!). The main male character Will is also a great character. He’s strong willed and he’s trustable, but he can also be ruthless, hard and cold. Both of them symbolize many things, but typical special snowflakes they are not. As for symbolizing? We get to point 4…
This story has layers upon layers of symbolism, mostly to do with mythologies, or namely – Christian mythologies, exposing them quite ruthlessly at times. This is magical and super interesting, merging religious symbolism with scientific fantasy (is that.. a thing, scientific fantasy..?), and weaving together a magical build of the world, of the universe. I will not tell you what the main characters (and many others) symbolize, because that would take away from your pleasure of discovering it yourself. However, if you are religious (not only Christian, basically, any religion that is based on a single deity) – be warned, as this book might seem controversial to you. It’s not kind to organized religion. You need an open mind to read it. If you are religious, and still really want to read it (which you should!), I suggest remembering that this is just fiction and it’s an invented world.
This series ends with a bad case of the feels. As bad as it gets. But it’s also the kind of feels you want in a book! Basically, the kind of feels we all read books for. But please, prepare napkins.