I’m Reading The Golden Compass

Given the amount of discussion that was generated by my last Golden Compass post I decided to read Philip Pullman’s book. I picked it up from the library earlier this week and I’m about 75% of way through it.

My first impressions:

This is not even close to being a Children’s book.

  • At 350 pages of small print it’s way longer than any of the Chronicles of Narnia.
  • The main character in the book is 11, but I’d say the target audience is far closer to 13 -17.
  • In fact, the library sticker on the side says, “Young adult.”

I’ll write a full review when I’m done.

I doubt I’ll see the movie as everyone seems to agree how artistically terrible it is.

5 Responses to “I’m Reading The Golden Compass”


  1. 1 Amanda December 14, 2007 at 8:18 pm

    What up, Billy!

    Brooks read it so he could be “in the know” when the questions/crticism came storming in. And they have…big time. Wes and I will probably see the movie when it either hits our cable system or comes out on DVD. Looking forward to your book review 🙂

  2. 2 Billy Chia December 15, 2007 at 4:16 pm

    Amanda,
    Yeah to be “in the know” was my initial intention, but it’s a very well written book and I found I actually enjoyed it.

  3. 3 W.E.B. Adamant December 16, 2007 at 11:09 pm

    Artistically terrible? That’s debatable. I thought it was visually stunning, but it’s desire to cram 350 pages into under two hours – while taking out some of the main points of the book – is the true “blasphemy”, if that can be said about this.

    Regardless, I’m glad you’re reading them and getting a first-hand glimpse of what all the buzz is about. I’ve found in situations like these, when both sides are heated and adamant about what they’re saying, the best that can be done is to take a first hand open-minded yet investigative look into the unknown.

  4. 4 Billy Chia December 17, 2007 at 1:03 pm

    W.E.B. – good call, art is always debatable.

    Your review is the first I’ve read that says the movie is actually worth watching. Many have bad mouthed it as not worth it.

    As far as “both sides” – I’d say there’s far more that 2 sides to this issue. The controversy surrounding these books is a subtle and nuanced as Pullman’s writing itself.

  5. 5 worshipcity December 18, 2007 at 10:18 pm

    Yeah, I don’t have time for another book but I was going to give the movie a chance until after the reviews and interviews I read. Apparently, like stated above, it is visually stunning, however, Chris Weintz took out much of Pullman’s “controversial theology” and even truncated the ending to give the movie mass appeal to a wider audience. Now, apparently Pullman fans feel jipped and Christians have nothing to complain about 🙂
    With I am Legend out and many more coming I might not get around to it.


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