Book Rating (54)
Narrator Rating (14)

The Book of Dust: La Belle Sauvage (Book of Dust, Volume 1)

Unabridged Audio Book

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Michael Sheen

13 Hours 8 Minutes

Listening Library (Audio)

October 2017

Audio Book Summary


2018 Odyssey Honor 
2018 ALSC Notable Children’s Recording
The Washington Post Best Audiobook of 2017
Slate Best Audiobook of 2017
Booklist Editor’s Choice Audio for Youth
AudioFile Best YA Audiobooks of 2017

'Too few things in our world are worth a seventeen year wait: The Book of Dust is one of them.' —The Washington Post

Philip Pullman returns to the parallel world of his groundbreaking novel The Golden Compass to expand on the story of Lyra, 'one of fantasy's most indelible characters.' (The New York Times Magazine)

Malcolm Polstead is the kind of boy who notices everything but is not much noticed himself. And so perhaps it was inevitable that he would become a spy....

Malcolm's parents run an inn called the Trout, on the banks of the river Thames, and all of Oxford passes through its doors. Malcolm and his daemon, Asta, routinely overhear news and gossip, and the occasional scandal, but during a winter of unceasing rain, Malcolm catches wind of something new: intrigue. 

He finds a secret message inquiring about a dangerous substance called Dust—and the spy it was intended for finds him. 

When she asks Malcolm to keep his eyes open, he sees suspicious characters everywhere: the explorer Lord Asriel, clearly on the run; enforcement agents from the Magisterium; a gyptian named Coram with warnings just for Malcolm; and a beautiful woman with an evil monkey for a daemon. All are asking about the same thing: a girl—just a baby—named Lyra.

Lyra is the kind of person who draws people in like magnets. And Malcolm will brave any danger, and make shocking sacrifices, to bring her safely through the storm.

'The book is full of wonder. . . . Truly thrilling.' —The New York Times

'People will love the first volume of Philip Pullman's new trilogy with the same helpless vehemence that stole over them when The Golden Compass came out.' —Slate

Note: This audiobook was recorded from the U.K. edition.

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  • Mark H.

    Another fantastic book in this Universe created by Sir Pullman. A thrilling storyline, made all the more tangible by the links to Lyra's life and future. Narration was excellent though I had to google what a hyena's laugh sounds like :)

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  • Courtney Buckley

    Really Captivating read! The Narration was also fantastic.

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  • Anne S

    An engaging story read by a trained actor.

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  • Brad A

    Pullman’s skepticism and disdain for theocracy is back with a veangance. His characters are fully realized and fleshed out as usual, but some are left in the dust after so much interesting development. The first half is the better part of this book, with a final act that is wrapped up much too abruptly. There is enjoyment to be had, and I’m excited for the rest of the series. Michael Sheen is a superb narrator, and perfectly delivers what would sometimes be silly dialogue. He brought me right into the world with him. I’m hoping he’s performing for the other books as well. Whether you’re new to Pullman’s work or an old fan, this book deserves your time.

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  • Liosha K

    Michael Sheen's narration is as good as Pillip Pullman's own. The book is good too, albeit not without a couple of silly parts, much like The Amber Spyglass. Still, very enjoyable - i cannot wait for the second book in the trilogy.

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  • Jamie-Lee F

    I loved this book! What an adventure!! Michael Sheen is probably one of the best narrator I have ever heard. He is right up there with Stephen Fry. Even if you haven't read His Dark Materials, this book would still be awesome. I can't wait for the next instalment!

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