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Publisher's Summary

Lyra and Will, the two ordinary children whose extraordinary adventures begin in The Golden Compass and The Subtle Knife, 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 troops of shining angels, fights his mighty rebellion, 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. The Amber Spyglass reveals that story, bringing Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials to an astonishing conclusion.

Listen to the rest of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials series.
©2000 Philip Pullman; (P)2001 Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Absorbing...Like Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling, [Pullman] invents a world filled with strange divinations and wordplays." (Newsweek)
"A literary masterpiece...[that] caps the most magnificent fantasy series since The Lord of the Rings and puts Harry Potter to shame...A page-turning story that builds to a powerful finish." (Oregonian)
"As the rich tale unfolds, Pullman's voice, elegant with a hint of both whisper and rasp, thoroughly enthralls, sounding by turns forceful and tender. The talented, extensive cast gives a dynamic, nearly flawless performance." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    3,379
  • 4 Stars
    1,262
  • 3 Stars
    490
  • 2 Stars
    151
  • 1 Stars
    84

Performance

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    2,522
  • 4 Stars
    490
  • 3 Stars
    121
  • 2 Stars
    22
  • 1 Stars
    11

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    2,156
  • 4 Stars
    635
  • 3 Stars
    280
  • 2 Stars
    80
  • 1 Stars
    42
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Crystal
  • Topeka, KS, United States
  • 02-11-13

Extremely well written

Would you listen to The Amber Spyglass again? Why?

No, although it was a very well written story with characters that you want to know more about and fantasies that captivate, this is a book that I found only worth reading once.

Would you be willing to try another book from Philip Pullman? Why or why not?

No. I read the entire His Dark Materials series and found that although fiction, much of the author's religious views scream out at you. Personal preference is all, his talent for writing is amazing, his views on the other hand are not for me.

Did Philip Pullman and full cast do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

Amazing! All audio books should be done this way!

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Many indeed :) even tears for Lyra and Will.

Any additional comments?

Good purely for entertainment value. Don't take too seriously, this book is fiction ;)

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Epic finish to a great series

Any additional comments?

Just finished the 3rd part of the His Dark Materials series, an amazing listen. The entire series is amazing and the last book is EPIC.<br/>The reading is great, definitely recommend it

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

A disappointing end to an entertaining series

What did you like best about The Amber Spyglass? What did you like least?

I didn't like how the defined characters seemed to change to suit the story line. The ending was both my most and least favorite. The ending in the relationships between the character was satisfying. There was closure in the relationships, and I felt as though I know what happened and what was coming for many of the characters. The ending was awful in that the plot was dropped in the last few chapters. The goings on in the world of Lord Asreal were left hanging, and I would have preferred a few more answers.

Would you recommend The Amber Spyglass to your friends? Why or why not?

If they had read the previous 2 books yes, but otherwise just read the first.

Any additional comments?

I originally downloaded this book to listen to while children were riding in the vehicle with me. As the war on the Authority becomes more established I found it inappropriate for young children.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Dark Materials Trilogy offers a compelling story

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

The various readers/voices are absolutely wonderful, bringing the story to life with dramatic flair and heartfelt meaning. Hearing Philip Pullman read his own words is also extremely powerful. In some ways, only he could credibly relate the details of the astonishing worlds he created.

What does Philip Pullman and full cast bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The voices of each character are now etched in my mind, making the story very real and powerful. I can't imagine that I would have enjoyed it so much if I had just read the book myself.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I was moved by the expression of love between Lyra and Will and their sacrifice in parting.

  • Overall
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  • Story
  • Nick
  • Chicago, IL, United States
  • 12-19-12

Bit of a let down.

Any additional comments?

A let down after the excellent first book and the very good second one. The ending was drawn out and a bit dull. I didn't want the first 2 books to end while I kept looking at the time left for the third on my audiobook, hoping it would wrap up sooner than it did . . . .

  • Overall
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  • Story
  • Aaron
  • Manhattan Beach, CA, United States
  • 09-10-12

Author reading his own tale sells it like no other

Would you listen to The Amber Spyglass again? Why?

This story weaves such an intricate tale across so many story lines that you want to read it again and again until you've truly internalized them all.

What does Philip Pullman and full cast bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

With so many outstanding voice actors each character seems to be the main character when the story is told in their voice making their story incredibly compelling.

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Mariana
  • Laredo, TX, United States
  • 08-13-12

a great story, an okay performance

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

Philip Pullman is a wonderful narrator, and I didn't even mind the full cast----it can be jarring in some cases, but it was mostly very well done here. I do, however, wish that they hadn't replaced the actor portraying Will Parry in the last installment (The Subtle Knife) with this new one. I much preferred his predecessor.<br/><br/>Also, it would help to have a full list of all the actors and the characters they portray. I've grown rather fond a few and I'd like to know who they are and whether they've narrated anything else.

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  • Andrea
  • Austin, TX, United States
  • 07-30-12

A spectacular ending to a spectacular series

It's over! I feel completely satisfied in this ending. What a heartwarming story. Lyra has formed into a wise young woman, and the armored bears are back. Yay!

  • Overall
  • Brian
  • rio rancho, NM, United States
  • 03-25-11

Amazing Audio Book

This entire series is amazing. The audio book is narrated by an entire cast of readers and pulls you in like no other. I am glad that I came across this book after listening to quite a few other reads of it might have biased me forever towards audio books. I am looking forward to re-listening to these titles. An amazing amazing audiobook.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Regret that it ended the series poorly.

I enjoyed the first 2 books of the series a great deal more than this third and final. The positive is the vast array of narrators which gave each character an identity seldom provided when a single person tries to create so many different voices.
The negative is the ending which was a bit of a let down. I guess I am just too much of a fan of the "happily ever after" ending which this one lacks.