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The Best Fantasy Books
The Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud
Genre: Fantasy
Type: Series

Learn more about The Bartimaeus Trilogy on Wikipedia

Reviews for The Bartimaeus Trilogy: Rate this book

Humorous, Worth Reading  - posted by DM 08-21-2012 12:26
Awesome character development. Based on parallel historical timeline where magicians rule. Magic is obtained by imprisoning spirits and torturing them into doing your bidding, and cruel and oppressive people excel at this. Knowledge of magic is kept from "the commoners", and used as a means of suppressing them. History is a never ending series of voldemort aspirants. Main characters are a naive boy who buys into the magician-run state propaganda and is slowly shown the truth, a djinn named Bartimaeus who has been made cynical by 5000+ years of watching magical civilizations come and go, and a "commoner" girl who ends up becoming part of the revolution to overthrow the magicians. Incompetent duffers have the long beards, pointy hats, and cloaks, and super bada**es look like harmless accountants. There's no Hogwarts in this one, because magic is jealously guarded and passed down only in apprenticeships, and only to the adopted to prevent magical dynasties. The "other place", from whence spirits originate, is without identity and the spirits are wrenched from there by giving them an identifying name. Defined existence in our realm is pain to them. This book is a harsh but humorous blow at statism, classism, identity, patriotism, and propaganda.

Demons anyone?  - posted by Joye 10-11-2007 11:57
These three books under the titles, The Amulet of Samarkand, The Golem's Eye, and Ptolemy's Gate, were about a young magician in England and his relationship with his demon slave, Bartimaeus. The only magic the magicians of this time had was the ability to summon and control demons. They could then get the demon to do all sorts of things for them, thus "magic". These books were all a little tedious to read. Stroud is a British author and he shows it. There are many details involving the British way of life and government that the story could do without. But when he finally got around to getting things done, the conclusions to each book were really good. The end of the last book was a total surprise. He led me through the whole thing thinking something different would happen, but he fooled me in the end. If you're one that can plow through a lot of tedious details, then the endings are worth reading the books. But if you're an impatient reader, then you'd be better off staying away from these.

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