Yeah I want to read the new Artemis Fowl as well -- and don't forgot I was the one who got you into that series, Joshi!
You're a bit wrong about the Golden Compass movie: whilst the reason that the sequels probably won't get made is because it did badly in the box office, the reason it did badly at the box office was because of Christian nuts. Probably, anyway. It did extremely well outside of America. And I don't think it's a bad film at all. I think it's a good film. Not as good as it could have been, but good all the same.
The director was actually forced to cut the ending off by the studio -- the proper ending was filmed, but a decision was made at the last minutes by suits.
I'm not sure one of the main themes of the books is "religion is nothing more than a controlling establishment": that's just too simple. Rather, it's "controlling establishments should always be rebelled against; religion is one example of an establishment that can be overly controlling." Pullman doesn't think that the church is the source of all evil. But parts of it have been in the past.