The Big Book Review Top 100 Books…. and a few more


Northern Lights – Philip Pullman

Northern Lights - Philip Pullman

Northern Lights - Philip Pullman

Top 100 Book :: Number 8 (The whole trilogy)

Star Rating:: ****

Quick Review::

Northern Lights, The first in a trilogy of books follows the story of Lyra an Orphan in a world parallel to ours. After losing her friend Roger she embarks on a mission to find him… Along the way she discovers horrible experiments, scientists and unravels many mysteries….

Detailed Review:: *SLIGHT PLOT SPOILERS*

Northern Lights is the first of 3 books in a trilogy by Philip Pullman. I would say the style is similar to Harry Potter, not plot wise, but in whom it’s written for. Although found in the Teenage section this book is by no means childish.

The book is a fantasy set in a world strikingly similar yet parallel to ours. Young orphaned Lyra begins a quest to the North after her friend Roger is taken by so called ‘gobblers’. Throughout her journey she meets many colourful, likeable allies along with some truly horrifying enemies. Lyra’s quest takes on a new role as she discovers more about her past and her family throughout her trip. The scene is well and truly set for the second book and I most certainly look forward to continuing the trilogy.

I am not surprised at all that this book has won two awards and that it is so high up on the top 100 book lists. It is incredibly easy to read and certainly for me, kept me enticed along the way. I got carried away in Lyra’s world wanting to find out what would happen. The storyline is pretty fixed, she goes on a quest to find her friend, things happen along the way but the storyline doesn’t drift off which is a definite positive for me.

Lyra is instantly loveable an innocent child hell-bent on rescuing her friend, you can’t help but be inspired by her courage and heroism along the way. Other characters introduced throughout are imaginatively created by Pullman, most notable to me is the warrior bear and of course Lyra’s closest companion her Daemon Pantalaimon, a shape shifting animal that each and every human has. The “baddies” are also well created and you genuinely feel for Lyra as she is betrayed and hunted by her enemies.

To summarise, I really enjoyed this book. I was not surprised because hearing it was similar to Harry Potter, and being a fan of those I was quite eager to get a copy. I wouldn’t recommend this to people who like to be challenged by a book as it is like reading a glorified fairy tale but for me it was perfect, a really easily readable book that not only entertained me but kept me hooked along the way. Highly recommended!

Comments (3) Trackbacks (0)
  1. The storyline sounds fasinating.Afterall it is fanasy.

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  3. This first book is definitely a *very* solid childrens fantasy book, if it had ended there it’d still be lovely. Particularly impressive is the construction of a fantasy world that borrows virtually nothing from other contemporary fantasy. It was so refreshing to read something without *any* goblins, elves, dwarves, fairys, dragons etc. etc.

    For me though, whilst the first is good, combined with the other two books it’s something much greater. Better still, whilst they remain as accessible they do incorporate some ‘challenge’, which, as you say is largely absent (not neccesarily for the worse) in the first.

    I look forward to hearing what you think of the other books anyway :)

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