Review: The Collectors

by Philip Pullman

the collectors pamsfour


Title: The Collectors
Author: Philip Pullman
Publisher: Audable
Format: Audio book – Read by Bill Nighy
Book: 0.6 of His Dark Materials
Genre: Fantasy/horror
Found: Audible
Rating: 4 Voodoos

“But the thing is,” said Horley, “they didn’t know each other at all. Never heard of each other. It wasn’t about the makers. Only about the works.”

On a dark winter’s night in 1970, Horley and Grinstead huddle for warmth in the Senior Common Room of a college in Oxford. Conversation turns to the two impressive works of art that Horley has recently added to his collection. What the two men don’t know is that these pieces are connected in mysterious and improbable ways; and they are about to be caught in the cross-fire of a story which has travelled time and worlds.


Having not read His Dark Materials for many years now this was a little confusing, I don’t recommend that you start with this book at all, I would recommend you ave it till the end, I’m not sure if there are any spoilers after all. Though it doesn’t SEEM overly connected it’s better safe than sorry. I liked that it was essentially a horror story about a young Miss Coutler (Though her hair colour confused me and Wiki told me it was off…) and her monkey.

There is nothing to explain the condition of the painting and sculpture which makes it feel all the more mysterious. I’d love to re-read these books sometime as I feel that it was quite a complex story I didn’t quite fully understand at 14. This added an extra layer of mystery to the whole affair and as an added bonus it was narrated by Bill Nighy.

I don’t think that these ‘collectors’ were relevant to the main books, just the means to carry the story. (I could be very wrong!) I felt we were simply meant to pay attention to WHERE they were and what they were talking about. It would be interesting to see if they were mentioned at all in the other books as background characters.

Something confused me though with regards to the time frame, and the excuse of “Time moves differently in other worlds.”. The way I understood it at first made NO SENSE! And I wondered if something was around the wrong way or if there was a MASSIVE HINT! But no, I’ve just realised – this is not lyra’s Oxford….so is it Will’s?!

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