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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars38
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 20 November 2007
This is a wonderful adaptation. The acting is really great - the voices are perfect in my mind, particularly Lyra, Will, Mrs. Coulter, the gyptians... Lord Asriel's seems perhaps strange to start with, but before long he seems great for the job. I agree with the above that the adaptations could have merited from being a bit longer - but having read the books and then listened to these it's not actually that noticable. The adapters have done well in condensing it to this space, spending most time on the most important bits - the end of the first book, for example. The adapters clearly have a great love of the book and Lavinia Murray has done a great job into adapting into two CDs worth, and the acting is really great. Highly recommended!
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on 10 September 2003
Though this is a very good dramatisation it is simply too short to do the books justice. Each book is given two-and-a-half hours which, while it gets across the essentials of plot and character development, is not sufficient to convey the depth and nuances of Pullman's writing. The acting is excellent, comparable, in my opinion, to that in the BBC's dramatisation of The Lord of the Rings. However, I have to say that I do prefer the Cover 2 Cover full cast unabridged readings of the books to this dramatisation.
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on 15 July 2004
This is an engrossing and thought provoking book, that has been transformed into an engrossing and thought provoking audio adaption. It certaininly made me look forward to sitting in traffic on the way to work.
Pullman's imagination and radical ideas are well worth the listen, and this BBC recording does it justice.
I highly recommend it.
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on 19 July 2010
A very impressive, abridged version of the three books. They have managed to condense a narrative that would occupy 10-12 CD's per book if unabridged into 6 CD's and still maintain story line integrity. The readings were entertaining and very well done with separate voices for each of the characters. This is the set to buy if you haven't the time or inclination to listen to the unabridge version. This set would also serve you well if you want to listen before buying the books.
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on 17 October 2011
If you have not read or listened to the full trilogy, and are a newcomer to this marvellous work of fantasy fiction, then you will probably like it, maybe even enjoy it for what it is...but...if you have first heard the full richly detailed imaginative trilogy His Dark Materials unabridged, you may find this very disappointing. I did, as an avid fan of the entire work, I thought it was far too abridged, it could have spanned a few more discs and been better for it, if it had been extended, it may have had more merit...in my opinion.
Here is a link to the entire collection, but surf around and the 3 can be obtained independantly with less expensive if you prefer -
His Dark Materials: "Northern Lights", "The Subtle Knife", "The Amber Spyglass" (C2C Childrens)
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on 10 August 2012
A fantastic rendition of the trilogy. If you loved the books it's impossible not to love the BBC Radio 4 dramatisation. I'd agree with other reviews that it feels too short; you get emotionally invested in the characters which are superbly acted and you simply don't want it to end. I don't view this a failing, the sense of loss is central to Philip Pullman's end for the trilogy - conveyed in spades in my opinion. More richly enjoyed if you have first read the books, in my opinion.
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on 24 March 2003
The books to read were utterly amzing and now this has been bought to life in the talking books. The story is one of true mastery equalled only by J RR Tolkiens visions in his trilogy and his books on middle earth.
The story of Lyra really comes to life and we can so easily understand her, and her growing, as the character develops.
This is a must for both adults and children alike who enjoy drifting off into other worlds and experiencing new, exciting and most of the time dangerous adventures.
A thumbs up from me!!
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on 7 June 2004
We've only listened to Northern Lights so far, but the only sound I heard from the back of the car for the whole three hour journey was a moan of disappointment when I pulled in the services and turned the car stereo off.
Bliss at any price !
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on 4 April 2014
I listened to this series of cd's on a very long drive with my 11 year year old son. We were riveted! Fantastictically voiced, thoroughly enjoyable, highly recommend for adults and children alike.
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on 26 March 2016
Probably as good as a radio play of these books could get. Woefully inadequate - maybe due to the relatively limited time available for the story (three 2-1/2 hour episodes)? Or maybe it's that the format of radio play simply does not work for Pullman's story, which has incredible depth, and is brilliant and evocative literature? Either way, I found that at best it merely could remind me of the books, and even the one great movie they made of the first book. That was a BIT pleasant, but not at all satisfying, in the end (do note the characters were acting their butts off, so no fault there - it just couldn't work).
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