Read The Tiger in the Well by Philip Pullman Online


Pullman is fast becoming a modern-day Dickens for young adults. The setting is the same, the strong eye for characters is there, as are the brooding atmosphere, the social conscience, and the ability to spin plot within plot.Sally Lockhart is now a young woman, left alone with a toddler. Nothing prepares her for the shock of receiving a summons from a man she has never evePullman is fast becoming a modern-day Dickens for young adults. The setting is the same, the strong eye for characters is there, as are the brooding atmosphere, the social conscience, and the ability to spin plot within plot.Sally Lockhart is now a young woman, left alone with a toddler. Nothing prepares her for the shock of receiving a summons from a man she has never even heard of, suing for divorce and the custody of her beloved Harriet. Sally struggles against the net closing around her, seeking to find out who is persecuting her and why. The writing style is lively and direct, and there's lots of action. "This is a suspense novel with a conscience, and a most enjoyable one."-- School Library Journal. ...

Title : The Tiger in the Well
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780679826712
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 416 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Tiger in the Well Reviews

  • Kate
    2019-04-19 15:49

    The publisher's blurb on the back of my edition of TTITW reads "THE PLOT GRIPS LIKE A DROWNING MAN AND DRAGS THE READER DEEP INTO THE SEWERS OF VICTORIAN VILLAINY." Yes. That is exactly what the plot is like/does. I would add only: "IT'S REALLY FUN TO READ AHH!" Pullman always hero-worships his protagonists a bit, but he writes such compelling ones it's impossible to blame him. Take Sally Lockhart, our heroine: She pulls off unwed motherhood in Victorian London like it ain't no thang. She runs her own business. She has very blonde hair and yet dark eyes. She's not afraid to use her pistol. When nervous or excited, she has a tendency to "trembl[e], intent as a tigress." A tigress!And Sally is nothing on Daniel Goldberg. The man is so charismatic he can defuse bloodthirsty mobs single-handedly--by telling stories! He speaks most of the European languages and possibly some other ones! He gets shot at! He's wanted for murder in Hungary! Hungary!The machinations of the plot are very enjoyable to follow, but is is Pullman's larger-than-life characters who really make this book for me. I don't have a crush on Mr. Goldberg the way I did when I was younger* but by god he's fun to read about--a perfect counterpart for Sally.*I might still have a slight crush on Mr. Goldberg

  • The Book Queen
    2019-04-06 10:45

    Pre-reviewThis looks terrifying, but I still gotta read it.ReviewIt was terrifying. But it was also very good, like the rest of this series, and basically everything Phillip Pullman writes is fabulous. I was so scared at many points and empathised so much with Sally. I can't imagine how awful it would be, to have some hidden enemy know everything about you and always be one step ahead of you. I did guess the villain, mostly because of (view spoiler)[his mention at the very beginning and the opium connection (hide spoiler)], but that was only half-way through and before that I honestly had no idea who it was. Like I said in one of my status updates, the great thing about this series is that you're never entirely sure who the villain is until the very end.That's not to say this book was without problems. The villain's death seemed very anti-climactic, and (view spoiler)[I honestly couldn't believe that Sally wouldn't have killed him. Her refusal seemed totally out of character. (hide spoiler)] Also, there could have been a few more pages at the end just to tidy things up more, and we could have had Sally's or Goldberg's perspective on the meeting at the prison. Which brings me to my main point: the romance was insta-love in the finest degree. (view spoiler)[They had what, two meetings?, and by the end they were kissing and Sally had decided to marry him. (hide spoiler)] If we had had more dialogue and interaction between the two that would have made it so much more believable. And lastly, I spent the entire book wondering what the hell the villain wanted to do to Harriet, and then when we finally found out, I was just like, "That's it?" I think it would have been so much creepier if he wanted to (view spoiler)[murder her, or lock her up in the cellar for the rest of eternity and starve her to death, or something (hide spoiler)]. Obviously I'm glad he didn't want to do this as I'm not a totally horrible person, but all of those things are so much more terrifying than what he actually was going to do. (view spoiler)[I mean, feeding him and wiping his mouth? Kind of tame. (hide spoiler)] And it makes me sad to say that, because the villain is anything but tame.However, despite all that, it was an excellent addition to one of my favourite series.

  • Michelle
    2019-04-05 10:05

    Meeehhhhh, Sally's second book was good, and this one...was not. Okay, I was still digging the setting of Victorian London. Sally, I was just at the Assyrian exhibit at the British Museum! I walked along Fleet Street. I can totally picture every single place we were hanging out. But omigosh, I cannot tell you how frustrating every other part of this book was. One, Sally is back to annoying me. Two, everybody that I liked, like Jim, is not in the book (until the end, when he, of course, saves the day). Three, Sally! Why are you so stupid? Your solicitor so obviously sucks and I can't believe you put up with his crap. You're supposed to be too much of a badass chick to deal with his incompetence. Also, why did it take you so long to realize who was behind everything? I mean, it was implied that you kind of knew, but just took you FOREVER to deal with it, but I'm not buying that. Again, badass chick. And four, why is everybody else so stupid? Sally cut and dyed her hair, people, she didn't change her entire face. Really, bad guys? You don't recognize her when she shows up at your house to work as a maid? *Slaps hand to forehead*(Just realized points one and three are...kind of the same thing. But she's so stupid and annoying in this book that it probably warrants two separate points.)In the end, Sally ends up with a sexy, smart political leader, who I kind of dig, but I still miss Fred :(

  • Peter
    2019-04-18 17:04

    The third book in the series of the Sally Lockhart Quartet is the longest and also by far the most interesting. Sally now has a two year old daughter named Harriet, whose father was the late Frederick Garland. Her financial business is successful and she live in a house in Richmond with old friends, Jim and Webster Garland, who are away in South America on a photographic assignment. But Sally's idyllic and unconventional middle-class life is shattered when she receives legal papers from a Mr Parrish, a man she's never heard of, who claims to be her husband. He is requesting custody of Harriet and he aims to ruin Sally and take her daughter and all her assets for himself. All of Victorian male society is against Sally and she is gradually stripped of everything she holds dear. Without her old friends to help her, she must once more use her wits and bravery to defend herself against the mysterious Mr Parrish as she sets out to discover the purpose of his plot and to right the injustice that he has brought upon her.It all sounds a bit melodramatic, but as usual the writing is brilliant, suspenseful and character driven. The plot is really a chance for Phillip Pullman to explore in detail the issues of Victorian London, from women's lack of marital rights to the suffering and lack of rights of the East End poor and the Toynbee-esque charities trying to help them. We meet dockers, London gangs, Jewish refugees fleeing the pogroms and the socialist radicals among them – here represented by Dan Goldberg, the stories other hero. All of these social-historical issues are subtly woven into a dramatic and action packed edge-of-the seat story, and you never feel like Phillip Pullman is crowbarring in his research. Instead the characters who represent these issues become friends and allies of Sally in her fight against the evil Mr Parrish, his shadowy employer (whose identity is pretty obvious if you read the first two books in the series), and the patriarchal Victorian Law. As the story goes on Sally gets to witness and assist her friends in their own struggles, which, as it unsurprisingly turns out, are connected with her own. Interestingly, there are little ideas and themes that link with His Dark Materials. The villainous Tzadick and his pet monkey that people claim is an evil spirit or a part of his soul, and that feeds him and defends him from those who would do him harm. The child kidnapping plot - albeit here seen from Sally, the Tiger-mother's, point of view. At one point, Sally and Dan Goldberg have a glass of Tokay, which is apparently a Hungarian Wine and is also a favourite tipple in His Dark Materials – I always wondered what it was. The London detail has got more believable as the Sally Lockhart series has gone on, there was alway a quality of description but the social and historical detail seems to be much better and subtler in this book. Altogether my favourite in the series so far.

  • Sofía Aguerre
    2019-03-21 16:58

    Antes que nada, debo admitir que con esta saga hice todo mal. Sabía de su existencia desde hacía años, pero no tenía mucha idea, tan solo me llamaban la atención. Un verano, compré uno en oferta. Con mi suerte de siempre, resultó ser el cuarto (La princesa de hojalata). Con mi suerte de siempre, resultó ser el único que no trata de Sally, sino de otros personajes secundarios. Lo disfruté mucho. Este año, encontré otro, también en oferta. Con mi suerte de siempre, resultó ser el tercero —al menos voy en orden, aunque sea inverso—. Bien, el único problema que tuve fue comerme spoilers gigantescos sobre los finales de los otros libros, pero eso estaba visto. Me molestó más no generar la empatía necesaria a causa de esos sucesos. En fin.El libro me sorprendió varias veces, algunas gratamente, otras no tanto. Toda la primera parte se me hizo eterna, aburrida, desesperante. Debo resaltar que la sensación de paranoia y desesperación de Sally al ser acosada por un enemigo invisible y del que no sabe sus motivos se siente en carne propia. Y ta, eso. Después, al iniciar el segundo libro y al empezar a moverse un poco más las cosas, lo terminé muy rápido. La trama es interesante y se nota una planificación previa. Qué decirles, amiguitos, es Philip Pullman. ¿Necesita acaso presentación? Es el autor de La materia oscura, una historia que considero fundamental. Si bien la saga de Sally es mucho más «informal», solo podemos esperar calidad de Pullman. He leído varios libros suyos; infantiles, juveniles, adultos... Es bueno. Give him a chance.Hay un par de cosas que no me convencen nadita. (view spoiler)[ ¿Cómo puede ser que Sally demore tanto en darse cuenta de quién es el enemigo? Hasta yo me di cuenta, y eso que no leí los otros dos libros. C’mon. Además, ¿cómo puede ser que no la reconozcan? Solamente se cortó el pelo y se lo tiñó, no se hizo una cirugía plástica. En fin.(hide spoiler)]No esperaba de este libro, eso sí, que fuera tan político. No es una crítica, me encanta. Que se cuestione así la sociedad, que se muestren la pobreza y la miseria de forma tan cruda es importantísimo. Para Sally y para cualquier lector. Daniel Goldberg es un personaje que me gustó mucho conocer. En fin, fue un libro que me dejó sensaciones mezcladas, pero que terminé por devorar. Sentí como Sally, que no es poco. Eso sí, recomiendo que lean la saga en el orden correcto. No soy un buen ejemplo, ¿eh?

  • Violet
    2019-03-30 09:49

    This is the best out of all of them! Very very good!! It's totally a "on the edge of your seat" and "wanting to kill the villian" book. I loved it!I always knew that Ah Ling was behind the whole thing. I mean who else from Sally's past that would want revenge? Everyone else died so it could only be him. The only thing that I didn't perdicted was that Mr. Lee was Ah Ling. That was a surprize. Okay, it wasn't that much of one. Once Sally started to learn more about Mr. Lee, I knew that he was Ah Ling. You can't fool me. I've seen to many detective and mystery shows.There was a lot more information about that time period, too. I had no idea about the whole thing with the Jews. Of course I don't live in England, so that might explain that. Anyway, it kind of reminded me of today. Back then they were all hating on the Jews. They thought that the Jews were the source of all the problems in London, which to tell you the truth were pretty bad. Now that I think about it, it reminds me of what was happening in Germany before World War II. There was propaganda that the Jews were the people that they should hated because they are the problem of the world. Anyway, back to what I was saying. Today people are kind of doing that with Muslims. It was Muslims that were behind 9-1-1, and it is Muslims that are attacking people in the middle east. People have a reason to hate Muslims. Do they? I mean because of this it's Muslims that are stopped at the airport more than anyone else, and being thought to be terrorists than anyone else. But not all Muslims are terrorists! Just like not all Americans are fat. You can't just tell what people are like based on their religion, race, looks, or where their from. Everyone is different. Everyone is a different human being. You can't jugde them like that! It's just not right. This book shows a lot of the problems of London in the late 1800's. Some of them are pretty nasty and sad. Very very sad. And to think that stuff was really happened! I can't believe it. And think to that some of that stuff is happening today. Yah, today we're much better off, but some of that stuff is still going on and probably not going to stop any time soon. Horrible, right? I knew that these things were and are going on but I never really thought about them. I live a sheltered life and things like that usually don't come into my everyday life. Gosh that's really sad. I should know and think about them. Some where there's human beings going through horrible things. That matters! But again, I really am incapable of doing that. I will forget these kind of things in a day or two. It's for the best. I mean what would I do if I thought about those things all the time? I would become very very down and paranoid. I don't want to feel that. I'll just try to remember it sometimes, instead. Yah, that would be better.There's a lot more charaters, suspense, settings, conflics, and more in this book. This is a very good ending to the Sally Lockhart series. I know what your thinking, "But what about The Tin Princess?" Yah, it's part of the Sally Lochart series but, to my understanding, Sally's not in this one. Jim is, but not Sally. So that's what I'm talking about. The end of the Sally Lockhart series.There's more of Sally in this book. I mean with Jim away and all, there's bound to be. But there was less villian chapters and more of Sally chapters and that's a change. In the other books, Sally is not always shown. This one Sally is almost always shown.I'm so glad that Jim got to take part of this whole mystery, though he came when everything was wrapping up. Almost the whole book I was thinking, "When is Jim going to come back?" or "I wonder what would happen if Jim was there." It was so cool to see him come back. I loved it!The whole time I was rooting for Sally. I was mad for her, sad for her, and just plain scared for her. The whole situation was very scary for Sally. I so wanted to kill who ever was behind this whole thing. Sally didn't deserve this. How dare someone try and take her child away from her. How dare they!So, that's it. Wow, I typed a lot. I guess that's what happens when your talking about a book that you love.

  • D.L. Morrese
    2019-03-30 12:44

    Sally Lockhart is a rare woman in Victorian England. She’s a single mother, competent, independent, and a successful and prosperous business owner. She has never been married, so when she is served with divorce papers, she cannot understand how such a mistake could be made. It soon becomes clear it is not a mistake. The details about her in the document are correct -- all except one. She has never met the man claiming to be her husband, the man who wants to take custody of her daughter.I would not have labeled this a YA book. There is nothing juvenile about it. It is a suspenseful Dickensian story of vengeance, greed, cruelty, and corruption, which vividly captures the social conflicts of the time. The images of Victorian London are detailed and clear. The contrasts between rich and poor, worker and owner are sharp. The only YA aspect may be a carryover from the first book in the series, The Ruby in the Smoke, in which Sally is first introduced as a 16-year-old orphan. I didn’t see that book as specifically YA either, though.My only criticism, and it’s not a strong one, is that I thought Sally should have been a bit quicker on the uptake in identifying the real force behind her troubles. I figured it out long before she did, but then I, as a reader, understand this is a novel and therefore must make sense. Real life, of course, is not like that.I highly recommend this book to all readers, especially those fond of Victorian mysteries. It’s a great story.

  • Jeanne
    2019-03-20 17:58

    The third installment of the Sally Lockhart mysteries series is even more complex than the other two entries. It is also, unfortunately, a little too obvious, as I figured out the identity of the mysterious villain way before Sally did. And if I figured it out, everyone figured it out.No matter, though, because Pullman still spins a decent yarn. It's about 2 years since we last saw Sally, and she is now raising Harriet, the daughter she conceived with Frederick right before he died. All seems to be well until Sally receives papers that state that she's being sued for divorce and custody of her child. One problem: Sally never married anyone. The problem compounds when her alleged husband starts taking all of her assets.So, Sally has to discover the origin of the cruel plot hatched against her. And, there's an interesting, but somewhat tangled subplot about Jewish immigrants and socialism in England. But it all comes together.A worthy conclusion to this fabulous trilogy.

  • Abby
    2019-04-12 16:01

    A great read. I would have given it five stars, but unfortunately Pullman wavers a bit towards the end of the book and overstates the socialism message in two of the last scenes. The socialism subplot is otherwise masterfully handled and lends intellectual depth to this mystery; it's a shame Pullman had to doubt his own powers of writing and slam us over the head with the socialism message in those two scenes.But other than that misstep, a terrific book - riveting, multilayered, and one of those rare books that's truly hard to put down.[Also, the cover of this edition is dreadful. So many things wrong - the monkey was dead at this point, Sally's hair was dyed brown, and Ah Ling was paralyzed from the neck down and thus unable to grasp Sally's wrist. Ack.]

  • Laura
    2019-04-14 17:49

    I love Sally Lockheart and blew through all these books when I was younger but Tiger in the Well is a bit different than the first two. It was Ok but not fantastic. The plot and mystery and Pullman contributing his own political ideas into the series keeps this one likable and interesting but it just feels like it's missing some of the charisma of the first two books possibly because it takes place so long after them.If you already read and like the Sally Lockheart books then this one is along the same vein and is another opportunity for Lockheart mystery, just don't let this be the first one you pick up.

  • Blaire
    2019-04-12 15:41

    This is the 3rd in the series that I've read. I liked the first two quite a bit, but I found this one very hard to get through. I think it's because the story is short on charm and long on political viewpoint. That's not what I was looking for in a YA novel. I also found some of the aspects of the bad guys pretty nauseating. I forced myself to finish it because I knew that once I put it down I'd never pick it up again. Too bad - Pullman had a good series going.

  • Renata Limón
    2019-03-23 16:49

    Socialism on the London docks for young adults

  • Eva
    2019-04-01 14:45

    Londres victoriano, un montón de mujeres y socialismo a espuertas. Win-win-win en una novela que se supone que es young adult.

  • Barb
    2019-03-24 13:06

    I think this is my favorite in the Sally Lockhart series so far, I can't say enough about how wonderful Anton Lesser is as the reader. He's amazing and his voices add so much to the story as a whole that once I started with the first audio book 'The Ruby in the Smoke' I no longer considered reading the books, it just wouldn't be the same. So frugal as I am and consummate library patron that I am, I had to buy the audio book of 'The Tiger in the Well' because none of the libraries in my area (or any other library for that matter) have a copy of it available. I have remedied that, and now that I'm done listening, I donated my copy to our library. (And yes, I did the audio download to play on my mp3 player and it just wasn't working for me no matter how I tried it. I needed to be able to listen and drive not have to fiddle with the technology and for that I needed the story on CDs).So, the story goes something like this: Sally Lockhart is enjoying the good life, she has a successful business and a happy if somewhat unconventional home life. She lives with her two platonic male companions Webster Garland and Jim Taylor who are away traveling in South America. Sally is the mother of a charming little girl named Harriet, Harriet's father was Fred Garland, Webster's nephew and sadly, Fred passed away before Harriet was born. The story opens as Sally is served with divorce papers for a marriage that never happened, as Sally learns more she sees that someone has a horrible hatred for her and intends to take away everything she has including Harriet. Those of us who know Sally also know she will do everything in her power to make sure that doesn't happen.The story I loved, the historical context was wonderful. The politics, the violence and persecution of the Jews was frightening. I loved the new characters Pullman created and while it wasn't difficult to figure out who master-minded Sally's downfall it was still exciting to see her discover who it was. I thought the maternal story-line with Sally and Harriet was well done and added another layer of realism to the story. Sometimes my children listened to the story with me, they liked Harriet and thought it was funny when she called biscuits "bickets", after that they would say "bickets?" to ask for the story to be played during our travels.I love the way Pullman threads humor through his work and several times I found myself laughing out loud. There was one point where two of the boys from the Irish gang that was helping Sally appeared in front of a constable. They were pleading their case for release in a very rapid-fire exchange of dialogue, the way that Lesser performed that scene had me in tears, gawd it was funny and reading it just wouldn't have come anywhere near it for entertainment value.The only negative comment I have to offer is that Pullman does make Sally a bit preachy on the socialist values at the end but the story itself is so wonderful that I'm not going to hold that against it. I have already started 'The Tin Princess' and I will be sad when I'm done. I'd love to see Philip Pullman write more books in this series. If anyone knows whether or not he will could you leave me a comment and let me know...thanks very much. (September 15, 2011)Listened for a third time now, I still love it. (April 11, 2016)

  • jess
    2019-04-15 10:41

    finally, i finish the trilogy of sally lockhart! our precocious girl heroine is a woman now, with a daughter, a flourishing business, a happy household, and a whole new tangled mess of problems. for me, this was the book where sally became a whole person. she has actual inadequacies! shortcomings! someone doesn't show up to save her at the last minute in improbable ways every time she's in trouble. she's a real adult, and this means that sometimes terrible things happen, there's no resolution, and then.... another terrible thing happens! lest you think pullman gets dark and avenges some wrath on poor sally, everything comes around neatly in the end. Sally seizes every opportunity to fall in with socialists and revolutionaries, to see firsthand the inequalities of the class system, to experience the fruits of hard work towards social justice, and to learn all about the evils of capitalism. it was a little overt for my tastes. maybe i like my political diatribes dripping with metaphors and cloaked in allegories, but i will give leeway for the fact that it IS technically Young Adult Fiction and sometimes you have to be a little more obvious for the kids. halfway through, though, i felt like i was being lectured, "Capitalism is Evil and I Am Part of It. But I Am Learning And I Can Change. We All Can." okay! should i go burn down a walmart or something? geez. sometimes i have this issue with great heroines, you know, where i can't tell if i want to fuck them, mother them, fight them, or be them. i have a lot of feelings, okay? but, finally i was clear on my emotions here - i really want to drink whisky with sally lockhart! in the first book i thought i probably wanted to wrap her up in a blanket and tell her to just be a kid for a minute. in the second book, i wished i could be a historical fiction character so that we could get a little 'tipping the velvet' action going. now, though, my feelings are resolved, finally, and i am filled with great relief at the resolution of this tension. unfortunately, i am a psychic genius with some serious kind of magical ability to see in the future, and i was able to spot the Final Twist from about 300 pages away, but maybe you will have the good fortune to be avoid this foresight.

  • Sandra
    2019-04-05 10:41

    Sally Lockhart is one of my role models. In this book she once again shows that strength of hers, her courage and her wit, but also her more vulnerable side. It's Sally driven into a corner, and my it's wonderful to see her try to fight her way out.The Sally Lockhart series ranks highly on my favourite series list. Mr. Pullman is a master writer, and a genius when it comes to storylines: this book especially was so full of suspense that I just wanted to keep reading. Putting this book down was a real challenge. It is definitely one of the most captivating books I have read in a long, long time.Also the characters are still wonderful. I mentioned Sally already, but the other characters are so fleshed out too, even those with little time on the page don't feel flat to me, all of the characters just seem so human to me, it's almost unreal. Besides a wonderful story, amazing writing and some of the best characters ever, Mr. Pullman also offers a mirror for society. The Tiger In The Well may be set in Victorian London, but it's amazingly saddening that so many of the problems from back then still haven't been resolved. I'm not sure if I'm a socialist, which seems to be part of the solution for the problems in society in the book, but even if you aren't a socialist, the politics in the book aren't disturbing. It's Mr. Pullman raising questions and asking you to use that wonderful mind of yours. And I must admit, I find him only the more wonderful for trying to tackle such desperately important issues in a children's book.

  • Mary-Jean Harris
    2019-03-26 16:45

    WOW. Another simply amazing book by Philip Pullman! As the third installment of the Sally Lockhart mysteries, it really takes the adventure to a new level. Each story branches out more and more into the world of the late 1800s: this one focused on the pogroms where the Jews were fleeing from Russia, as well as the emerging socialist groups in England. We not only follow Sally, but also many other POV characters, which makes the story very interesting. The writing is superb: some review said Philip Pullman is the modern day Charles Dickens (though still writing fiction that takes place in the 1800s), and I would agree, but I would even go so far in saying that Pullman nails many aspects of writing better than Dickens, such as focus on important aspects of the story while still allowing for lovely little digressions (some of those lovely little digressions in Dickens become, well, not so lovely when there are so many of them).The tone of the story continues from The Shadow in the North to be dark and at times serious, but believe me, I was laughing out loud often. The only misgiving I have is that in the end we don't see HOW the Tzaddik managed to set up Sally the way he did (no spoiling details here!). Also, Jim Taylor only came in at the very end, and he's one of my favourites, so that was disappointing (but I am looking forward to his return in The Tin Princess!). The story is so real, and will make you laugh and cry and keep reading until the end.

  • Lindsey
    2019-03-27 16:37

    "Tiger in the Well" has been perhaps my favorite book thus far of the Sally Lockhart series. One of the best aspects of this series is that Sally continues to grow and change. In fact, the majority of characters, even minor ones, get a chance to develop as the story progresses. An interesting aspect of this book is Sally's reaction to the spreading of socialist ideas in England. This is where Pullman's politics start to come into play. His personal politics have a strong, identifiable influence in the His Dark Materials trilogy, so it's not terribly surprising to see that influence in these books, as well. While I don't necessarily buy into Sally's warming to socialism strictly because she sees the slums of London, Pullman doesn't really completely convert her from her capitalist ways either. Instead, you see her simply grow to become more accepting of other ideas, and understand that there is a need for change in how things are being run. For those of you who just want a good historical mystery, don't worry, the underlying politics won't spoil your fun. But for readers who enjoy a more critical analysis, The Tiger in the Well holds up as something you can sink your teeth into, while thoroughly enjoying the ride.

  • Jen
    2019-04-03 14:40

    There was a lot to like about this book, the set up was great, there was a lot of tension in the early stages, and the characters are all compelling. However, I felt it was rather overwritten, being far too long to maintain the urgency of the plot, and the villain was so obvious it was painful waiting for the protagonist, generally a very astute character, to catch up with the reader. Overall I felt the book really lacked subtlety - the deus ex machina was so frequently foreshadowed it might as well have had flashing arrows pointing at it, and the political element to the plot, which I loved as an idea, soon got very wearing as you were repeatedly subjected to the same arguments, and on occasion were actually lectured by characters. With all of its flaws, however, I still enjoyed the book, I just wish it had been written in a more nuanced way.As an additional note, for a book that deals so heavily with the issue of female emancipation, it might be nice if the main character wasn't so frequently described as being stunningly beautiful, which indicates that this is one of her most positive qualities. Bleugh.

  • Lisa
    2019-04-12 17:40

    This is the longest and most intricate of the books. There are several things going on: Sally's persecution by a mysterious man, persecution of Jews emigrating from Russia and other eastern European countries into England, and the struggle of Socialists in Victorian England. These three books create a path of knowledge for Sally Lockhart. In the first, she is forced to fight for herself. In the second, she learns independence (both economic and personal.) She also becomes aware that evil is not just violence, but the greed and power that is behind it. This third book defines that evil. It is given a face through the words of the Socialist hero who helps Sally. She finally becomes aware of her own part in this evil. By understanding this, she can make the changes in her own life and the life of her friends and clients to fight it.[return][return]There is plenty of adventure, as well as politics, to keep the reader engaged. The mystery is easily solved by anyone who has read the first two books long before Sally figures it out. That was the only disappointment to me. Otherwise I think it's a great book. I highly recommend reading these.

  • Trina
    2019-04-04 13:39

    A magnificent woman! That is how one character describes Sally Lockhart. And she is. She is far ahead of the pack of Victorian lasses with their smelling salts and corsets. Pullman makes her entirely believable. The same cannot be said for her baby girl Harriet. If only Pullman had made her just one year older, then I'd have gone along with her wonderfully willful and curiously adaptable character. Even a 'young adult reader' with any babysitting experience will recognize that 2-yr.-olds don't really speak or behave quite so grown up or take it all in stride when separated from familiar surroundings let alone their mothers... Still, the events both Sally & Harriet go through to survive disaster after disaster make for a very good adventure story at any age!

  • Keita-Eiri Kettlewell-Scarbro
    2019-04-02 13:46

    Absolutely fantastic and wonderful to behold, and I'm not even kidding... this book is wonderful. Especially for those strong ladies out their, independent and fighters... yup, this book is for all of you because damn, it'll give you hope.Okay, so it's not an epic work of fantasy like "His Dark Materials" but this series in its own right, is brilliant, full of action and emotion and I can't deny the love I know I feel for it and for Sally and her fight throughout.However, all my other thoughts and ramblings about this one are in my blog, so go and check it out my lovelies!! Pretty please~"The Tiger in the Well" by Philip Pullman - [[REVIEW]]

  • Just_ann_now
    2019-04-16 11:05

    I'm still gobsmacked at the idea that this is a YA series. The themes explored in these novels - the opium trade, human trafficking, exploitation of immigrants, socialism, early feminism - don't seem like anything my kids would have read in their teen years! And my kids were pretty bright kids. That said, this is an amazing series I wish I could point it out to all the Steampunk folks - "Look, this is real Victorian era grittiness!" This volume, "The Tiger in the Well", was a compelling, and in many places painfully difficult read. Sally's initial disbelief at what was happening to her, followed by her rage and frustration and terror, were extremely well depicted.

  • Jackie
    2019-03-28 15:55

    SO much better than I remember it being, and small wonder: these plots are intricate, these motivations are adult. I was a very precocious reader, but these emotions were beyond me on my first encounter with The Tiger in the Well and as a result the book frustrated me. No longer!

  • Melody
    2019-04-05 17:00

    I read it hoping for some redemption after the debacle which was Book the Second. I think I felt so betrayed by Pullman that I couldn't fairly assess this book on its own merits. I'm still mad at him.

  • Jannah (Cloud Child)
    2019-04-16 10:45

    Reread. Gripping and suspenseful read with many plot points skillfully woven to create a epic story.

  • Alisa
    2019-04-16 17:44

    what a great ending to the trilogy. socialism, social justice, passionate love and sewage. what more could i want?

  • Lakwi
    2019-03-29 17:37

    so far, so awesome. can't wait to finish!update - was right. it was awesome. a feminist protagonist, socialism, human trafficking, all set in the 19th century.

  • Jenny OH
    2019-03-22 12:45

    I didn't realize until I was about five pages in that I had somehow ordered this book from the library before the second book in the series, but I was so hooked already that I didn't want to put it aside and wait. In fact, it didn't impede me too much - probably because forces from the first book, Ruby in the Smoke, come into play again in Tiger in the Well. That said, I am definitely going to go back and read Shadow in the North, so I would advise reading them in order! TitW was so well plotted and fast paced, and I feel some of its gripping nature is due to the frustration and injustice that Sally faces. Anyone who can read this without wanting to slap Mr. Parrish's silly little mustache (does he in fact have one? I feel that he must) off his face, must be a robot. Sally's own development, from an outwardly successful yet also somewhat complacent businesswoman and inattentive mother to a women fiercely protective of her child and her beliefs, was very well done. It would have been easy to be preachy about the conditions Sally experienced in east London or the plight of the Jewish refugees, they were treated as profoundly moving but practically motivating as well. Overall a thoroughly enjoyable edge-of-your-seat thriller with some poignant historical context.Read-alikes: Tasha Alexander's Lady Emily series and Deanna Raybourne's Lady Julia series both feature strongly-written women intent on solving mysteries and living their own lives. The Quincunx by Charles Palliser also details a heartwrenching decline into pennilessness while evading sinister forces, and a tightly-knotted mystery to unravel.

  • Katie Bee
    2019-04-05 16:37

    I'm afraid I didn't like this one as much as the first two books. I'm short on patience for plots that require people to be incredibly stupid, and this one had that in spades. First Sally has to be incredibly stupid, entirely against her characterization to date - I simply don't believe she wouldn't have grasped the full implications of the situation she found herself in. (After spending so long refusing Fred's love because of her worries about holding on to her own property, for instance, she simply (view spoiler)[doesn't realize that after a court finds the sham 'marriage' valid, all her property will go to her husband and she'll be left penniless. It's a complete surprise to her and leaves her destitute. (hide spoiler)]) And then Sally has a cursory makeover that entails cutting and dying her hair, and nobody recognizes her, even when she comes face to face on multiple occasions with her mortal enemies. I just don't buy it. Nope. Nada.Besides the dumbness of these plot requirements, which made Sally seem OOC for the whole book, one of my favorite characters, Jim, was absent for 98% of it, and his absence was sorely felt. An OOC Sally, no Jim, and melodrama upon melodrama? Definitely my least favorite in the series.