books

The Amber Spyglass – Republic of Heaven

Well pyjaks, I did it, I finished this amazing trilogy and there is so much ground to cover!

The more I read, the more complex it became. There’s still a lot of concepts that I do not understand and it makes me wish I that I read the Bible in order to do so.

But no matter, I still have enough knowledge to write a reasonable review. Major spoilers ahead so read at your own risk!

The first part of this book felt like tons of things were happening at once. The first book focused on Lyra, the second primarily on Will but with Lyra still getting parts as well, and now this one focuses on several different perspectives from Iorek, Serafina, and Mrs. Coulter.

I was concerned that Lyra was going to spend the majority of this book as a damsel in distress, kept in a drug-induced sleep by her mother who has now turned against the Magisterium who wish to kill Lyra now knowing how her temptation as Eve will change the world forever, a change they definitely don’t want!

So, during that time as I read one chapter after another, I kept wondering when the time would come where I would find out who would get to her first.

There’s more angels in this book, we learn that the two angels Will met at the end of the last book are Balthamos and Baruch and it also introduces other species such as the mulefa whom Mary Malone embarks on a journey with, and the Gallivespians; insect-sized humans that ride on dragonflies and serve as spies for Lord Asriel.

When Lyra is finally rescued by Will and Iorek, she wants to go to the land of the dead to speak to Roger’s ghost. One of my favourite touching moments in this book is when Iorek and Lyra share a tender moment before she departs. Not only does she hug him, but he also lets her cuddle up to him while he licks her hands clean from the dirt when she helped reforge the knife.

At first I didn’t expect them to enter the suburbs of the dead in such an accidental way, but it was devastating to see her leave her daemon behind in order to enter the true land of the dead. I couldn’t put this book down as they journey with the souls through the abyss either. Pretty much all of the chapters up to past the battle were the most memorable parts of the book to me.

So the amber spyglass allows Mary to see Dust and Mrs. Coulter manages to trick Metatron himself; the Authority’s Regent but both she and Asriel die in a brawl against the angel. Asriel, good riddance, never liked him. He was a terrible father but Mrs. Coulter was so well-written, one time you think she’s meant to be evil, but she also does everything out of love, she definitely loved Lyra way more than Asriel ever did.

The book ended with some very sad moments, but what I didn’t understand was how did Will get a daemon of his own? What did Lyra do as Eve that changed the world? Was it her desire to set the dead free, or was it when she and Will had fallen in love after all they had been through? The latter seemed to be the cause of the change in Dust and the worlds. But now they can’t be together completely because of what needs to be done in order to prevent Dust from disappearing forever.

At least they can still be together in some way in that garden I guess. Their relationship was so cute when it blossomed, it reminded me a lot of Han and Raisa from The Seven Realms, equally as passionate, even if there was no sex. But you know what, who says there has to be that in order for the relationship to be passionate? The two of them went through a lot together.

The only other down sides is that it never explains how Lyra lost her ability to read the alethiometer and now has to learn like everyone else how to do so, and nobody ever told her that Asriel and Marisa were now dead. Surely you’d want SOME closure even if they weren’t the greatest parents in the world right? At least her daemon settled and I’m not surprised what it has settled as. Some other characters could have used better ends as well, like we never saw Iorek again after he helped Will and Lyra get to safety from the battle either.

*sigh* well it doesn’t matter I guess, this conclusion to the trilogy was still great in so many ways, the good outweighs the bad as usual, and I really need to expand my vocabulary when I write. I have one more Dragon Age novel to tackle, many Lovecraft stories that I’m considering reviewing and I just bought a new Kobo ereader; something I originally disdained from, but now I’ve had a change of heart seeing the convenience of it since I’ve run out of rooms on my shelf for physical books, and I’m reading a Darksiders novel about the Abomination vault on it.

Anyway, the conclusion to this trilogy, amazing and great farewell for most of the characters, a trilogy worth reading and re-reading often.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

👽Emily

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