From School Library Journal
Grade 6 Up–The loquacious djinni introduced in Amulet of Samarkand
(2003) and Golems Eye
(2004, both Hyperion/Miramax) is back, or, more accurately, he hasnt left in three years. While Bartimaeus retains all of his wit and wisdom, his essence suffers severely from lack of rest. Nathaniel, now Information Minister, spends his time writing propaganda to bolster the common folks belief that England is winning its foreign wars and tracking down traitors within the government. Kitty Jones has gone into hiding, apprenticing herself to a magician and learning enough from her master and through research to summon Bartimaeus herself. When Nathaniel finds Kitty, the two of them and the djinni must use all their strength and cunning to defeat the most dangerous demons they have yet encountered, demons that take over the bodies of the government magicians. Ptolemys Gate
is an exciting and eminently satisfying conclusion to the trilogy, footnotes and all. This time, readers learn more about Bartimaeuss past and his connection to the loinclothed boy whose likeness he wears. Kittys strength and intelligence shine through, and Nathaniels inherent compassion emerges from the mask of John Mandrake. This is a must-have for libraries that purchased the first two books. For those that didnt, buy all three at once for readers who want something that is literate, entertaining, and exciting.–Lisa Prolman, Greenfield Public Library, MA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
*Starred Review* Gr. 6-9. The final volume in the Bartimaeus trilogy reveals more backstory and exposes greater complexity in the characters, even as the plot thunders along toward its colossal climax. The narrative alternates between first-person chapters from the djinni Bartimaeus' point of view to third-person chapters focused on Nathaniel, the magician, and Kitty, the commoner. Although Bartimaeus has lost none of his caustic wit, another side of his character is revealed through scenes in ancient Egypt and in the spirit world. A cabinet minister, Nathaniel sees the traditional power structure crumble around him, feels his own moral compass grow stronger, and takes actions that once would have been impossible for him. Now they seem inevitable. Kitty, after secretly studying magic, takes a challenge that few magicians would have dared: entering the spirit world and returning. Stroud's picture of this alternate world is one of the most remarkable scenes in recent fantasies. It leads readers' imaginations outside the realm of physical reality and offers an awareness of that reality as seen from the outside. For fans of Bartimaeus, Nathaniel, and Kitty, this will be the most satisfying volume of the three, as questions are answered and hidden depths are revealed. For readers who loved the earlier volumes for the sheer adventure, this, with its battles, magic, and great crashing conclusion, will not disappoint. A worthy ending to an exceptional saga. Carolyn PhelanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved