His Dark Materials

By Philip Pullman. Trilogy includes The Golden Compass published in 1995, The Subtle Knife in 1997 and The Amber Spyglass in 2000.

Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy is supposedly for “young adults,” teenagers, but the three books are so compelling, so powerful and thought-provoking and heartfelt, that they certainly should not be limited to a single age bracket. With beautifully drawn characters and a taut, suspenseful plot, the fantasy series makes for an electric, enjoyable read, and yet ultimately, the books are profoundly serious. As the story unfolds, Pullman’s true audacity becomes apparent: He has written a strange kind of sequel to Paradise Lost — unabashedly heretical but undeniably hopeful. By no means should teenagers have a monopoly on these books.