Best of the Sally Lochart Trilogy, Sally Lockhart is a strong female roll model that protects her ownlife and the life of her daught from the evil men of the early industrial revolution in London,
I have no idea why the Sally Lockhart mysteries (four in all) are classified as for young readers. The plots and themes all seem very 'grown-up' to me.
I thoroughly enjoyed all four books in this series, especially the first three of which are based in Victorian London.
Quite a tour de force; an adventurous tale with lots of twists and turns and richly complex characters. Highly recommended.
The year is 1881. The leading character is Sally Lockhart, now twenty-five years old. She is independent, quite unusual in the Victorian era, runs her own business and lives comfortably with her young daughter.
But that independent and comfortable live is about to disappear, when a stranger claims to be her husband and accuses Sally of deserting him and running away with their daughter. While trying to stay a step ahead of this mysterious plot against her, Sally is thrown into an area of London unknown to her before, where she is introduced to Jewish immigrants and their causes.
This may be the most well-plotted and intricately molded tale of the Sally Lockhart mysteries, and it is my favorite.
Sally finds herself set up by an unknown enemy, standing to lose absolutely everything and everyone she ever cared about. She fights to discover why this has happened suddenly, as her situation becomes ever more dire. Pullman introduces the story of the 1880's pogroms against the Russian Jews as a tangentially-related issue to Sally's own problems. I found the presentation of the Anti-Semitism of that era not effectively presented. It seems almost as though the first book stands on its own, with the focus of the next two being an anti-czarist message expressed through Sally's life story.
I didn't care for this series as much as "The Dark Materials" trilogy, but Philip Pullman is an excellent young adult author.
From Publishers Weekly
This sequel to The Ruby in the Smoke and The Shadow in the North combines heart-thumping suspense, a thorough-going examination of Victorian London's underclass, a lively gang of heroes and villains and a mystery sinister enough to leave readers filled with anxiety. An unknown evildoer has made elaborate plans to steal Sally Lockhart's life away from her--by usurping her home, her business, her daughter Harriet and, finally, her sanity. Elsewhere in London, Jewish immigrants who have fled the Russian pogroms are being systematically fleeced. Daniel Goldberg, a socialist journalist, believes that the evil genius behind these brutal acts is a shadowy figure known as the Tzaddik. Rendered homeless and hounded through London's slums, Sally endures a plight that in many ways mirrors the mistreatment of the Jews. Aided by Goldberg and a handful of the city's toughest gangsters, the dauntless heroine triumphs over this malevolence. Astute readers are likely to figure out the Tzaddik's identity long before Sally does--a bit of predictability that is at odds with Pullman's otherwise tight plotting. On the whole, however, this thought-provoking romp is as rich and captivating as a modern-day Dickens novel. Ages 12-up.
Great for teens and adults. Very good plot -- intriguing! Part of a series.
Great ending to a spine tingling trilogy.
As "The Tiger in the Well" begins, we find Sally Lockhart a single mother in Victorian England, her lover having died before they could be married. This is a hard enough situation, in those times, but soon Sally finds herself as the victim of a mysterious and elaborate scheme designed to ruin her reputation and have her daughter taken from her. Who could hate her this much, and why? Exciting, entertaining (and feminist) adventure.
The Tiger in the Well (Sally Lockhart Trilogy, Book 3) is the most complex story of the Sally Lockhart Series. The author literally pulls you into the story and you are compelled to keep reading. The window into Victorian England is vivid and astounding in its descriptions and you can almost smell it.
A great read, highly recommend it. But read Book 1 and 2 first as they set up characters that run through the series.
Get all three Sally Lockhart books. Read them back to back as they all belong together in one giant novel.
BOOK 1: The Ruby in the Smoke instroduces us to the main characters and develops their relationship through an adventure/mystery ala Sherlock Holmes. BOOK 2: The Shadow In The North lets Sally loose with her new found family as they get unwittingly get involved in another set of scams and find they all come together at one railway crossroad. BOOK 3: The Tiger In The Well -- will pick up where Book 2 left off; pay attention to BOOK 2 before you get into BOOK 3! This is important to keep all three books fresh by reading them back to back. Highly recommended series. If you like your ladies to be ladies but also not afraid to get their hands dirty or think out a plan, strong women characters, then you will fall in love with Pullman's Sally. After reading His Dark Materials, right up my alley for novels, didn't think I'd really like the Sally Trilogy. Wrong! It's the writer who makes you the fan for life.
Kept me interested throughout.
Actually, I think this is the best of the three Sally Lockhart books.
Sally, now 25, is comfortably settled with her child, Harriet, her work, and her London friends. But when a complete stranger claims to be both her husband and Harriet's father, Sally's whole world comes crashing down around her. With nowhere to turn, she escapes with Harriet into the slums of London's East End--and finds help in some unexpected quarters.
"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 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.