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The Rough Guide to Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" (Rough Guides Reference Titles) [Paperback]

Paul Simpson
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

6 Sep 2007
The Rough Guide to Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials explores the beguiling world of Philip Pullman’s classic trilogy. The guide covers Pullman’s inspiration from science and literature, including string theory, climate change and dark matter, Milton, Blake and fantasy fiction. The Story and characters are unraveled with insight into the key mysteries and events and how everyone from Lyra Belacqua to the golden monkey demon fit in to the author’s grand design. You’ll find everything from the story behind the filming and cast of the first His Dark Materials film, The Golden Compass to how the Victorian era shaped Pullman’s imagination, with a tour of Oxford’s Exeter College, Geneva (home of the Magisterium), Venice (Cittagazze), and of course where to catch the Northern Lights. Pullman shares his views on religion, and discover what organised religion has to say about his books.Cut threw the darkness and step into another universe with The Rough Guide to Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Rough Guides; 1 edition (6 Sep 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1843539209
  • ISBN-13: 978-1843539209
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 13 x 1.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 396,533 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Paul Simpson is author of The Rough Guide to Cult Movies, The Rough Guide to James Bond, The Rough Guide to Kid's Movies & The Rough Guide to Westerns.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By Dr. I. Cox VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Having seen the film "The Golden Compass" ( based on the book the "The Northern Lights" - 1st book in the trilogy) I wished to know more of the overall story - which may or may not be committed to film.

I then enjoyed reading the trilogy "His Dark Materials" ( see seperate review) but wanted to delve more deeply into the thinking behind the book(s).

For those wishing to get further background to the books , the story ( an apparent orphan discovering the identity her parents and the world of adults in a semi victorian universe starting in Oxford - with a repressive and inquisatorial religious system ), the science ( parallel universes , "dust" and dark matter) and the history ( comments from Pullman himself), this provides an excellent pocket guide at a reasonable price and indicates other sources ( books , websites) where more information can be found.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 star + 5 Feb 2009
Format:Paperback
What a terrific book at an excellent price. I would regard it as indispensible for anyone with an interest in and love for this amazing trilogy. Go buy it!
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars perfect 24 Feb 2008
Format:Paperback
I have been searching for a good HDM companion book for a long time, and after reading lots, I can safely say this is by far the best. It covers everything in all the detail you would want, and it packs so much information in. If you are looking for a good companion, get this one.
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Amazon.com: 2.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Seductive style masks sloppy scholarship 30 Dec 2007
By I'd rather be reading - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
At first I thought that this was a great addition to the growing number of books about His Dark Materials.

But when I wanted to learn more about an idea, like that "the alethiometer has been likened to the liahona. . . used by the Mormon prophet Lehi" (p. 50), I changed my mind. Who came up with this idea? I found what I think is the source by googling -- but that isn't how it is supposed to work. The source should have been noted in Paul Simpson's book.

You give credit where credit is due -- you don't take a bit from this writer and a bit from that, fail to identify your source, and call it writing a book.

Another example: Even when Simpson appears to be citing sources, he's sloppy. On page 40 he attributes to David Colbert's book a quotation by Pullman regarding daemons that originally appeared in an interview by Catherine Andronik -- I know this because Colbert did the right thing, and credited his source (Andronik) in his book. But Paul Simpson's Rough Guide makes it appear as if Colbert's book, The Magical Worlds of Philip Pullman, is where this information first appeared.

The argument that this Rough Guide isn't for scholars doesn't hold up. Colbert's very rigorously honorable book also isn't for academics.

It's all about fairness and respect.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Opened up my world. 18 Jan 2008
By Stephen Thoemmes - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
After having read the trilogy and thinking about it a long time, I was curious about this book. To be totally subjective, I loved the format and printing of the book. Then, it also made me think even more about the trilogy. I welcomed the illumination of such a dense work. It brought up many details that I have either forgotten or glossed over. I appreciate this book and have purchased it for other fans of the trilogy.
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