The Golem's Eye

By Jonathan Stroud

This second book in the Bartimaeus Trilogy was a bit disappointing at the outset, but it picked up wonderfully towards the end. When I read this book at the age at which it was intended to be read, I was probably kept in constant suspense over the mysterious and powerful unknown threat that dominates the first couple hundred pages. However, as an adult with an English degree under my belt, it was painfully easy to guess that the scary thing, which appears after a flashback that conveniently features a golem, and which is in a book called “The Golem’s Eye,” is a golem. So, the mystery of the first half of the book was unsatisfying.

The second half of the book seemed to be written for a keener audience, featuring several unexpected twists and a hell of a cliff hanger that has me excited to crack open the third installment. I’m very glad I’m re-reading these. I especially appreciate the depth of the main character, who seems to be defying the stereotypical hero and anti-hero archetypes, and instead sticking to a more realistic (and evil) version of himself. Let’s hope the final book holds up the reputation of the previous two!