The Golden Compass (His Dark Materials, Book 1)
13 journalers for this copy...
Some books improve with age--the age of the reader, that is. Such is certainly the case with Philip Pullman's heroic, at times heart-wrenching novel, The Golden Compass, a story ostensibly for children but one perhaps even better appreciated by adults. The protagonist of this complex fantasy is young Lyra Belacqua, a precocious orphan growing up within the precincts of Oxford University. But it quickly becomes clear that Lyra's Oxford is not precisely like our own--nor is her world. For one thing, people there each have a personal daemon, the manifestation of their soul in animal form. For another, hers is a universe in which science, theology, and magic are closely allied:
As for what experimental theology was, Lyra had no more idea than the urchins. She had formed the notion that it was concerned with magic, with the movements of the stars and planets, with tiny particles of matter, but that was guesswork, really. Probably the stars had daemons just as humans did, and experimental theology involved talking to them.
Not that Lyra spends much time worrying about it; what she likes best is "clambering over the College roofs with Roger the kitchen boy who was her particular friend, to spit plum stones on the heads of passing Scholars or to hoot like owls outside a window where a tutorial was going on, or racing through the narrow streets, or stealing apples from the market, or waging war." But Lyra's carefree existence changes forever when she and her daemon, Pantalaimon, first prevent an assassination attempt against her uncle, the powerful Lord Asriel, and then overhear a secret discussion about a mysterious entity known as Dust. Soon she and Pan are swept up in a dangerous game involving disappearing children, a beautiful woman with a golden monkey daemon, a trip to the far north, and a set of allies ranging from "gyptians" to witches to an armor-clad polar bear.
In The Golden Compass, Philip Pullman has written a masterpiece that transcends genre. It is a children's book that will appeal to adults, a fantasy novel that will charm even the most hardened realist. Best of all, the author doesn't speak down to his audience, nor does he pull his punches; there is genuine terror in this book, and heartbreak, betrayal, and loss. There is also love, loyalty, and an abiding morality that infuses the story but never overwhelms it. This is one of those rare novels that one wishes would never end. Fortunately, its sequel, The Subtle Knife, will help put off that inevitability for a while longer. --Alix Wilber
babsdotter (Missouri, USA)(prefers US postage)
Bibliocrates (Alabama, USA)(would like to ship to Africa)
nrrdgrrl (South Africa)--> has her own copy now, so asked to be skipped
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
Book is on its way to AnnevO. Enjoy!
This book will be given to Fifna tomorrow.
As soon as I have chocdrop's address I'll send in on its way.
I have one other ring book to read before I get to this one.
I can't wait to read the other books in the trilogy - I want to know what lies in store for Lyra next. I also hope that at some point she is reunited with Iorek.
Thank you, Suzy26 for sharing this book with me. I will get it in the post to catsalive tomorrow.
Thanks Suzy26. I'll get this off to RockDg9 ASAP.
I have PMd babsdotter for an address.
Released 11 yrs ago (4/11/2007 UTC) at
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
I kinda forgot about this bookring, and am now SUPER excited to have it in my grubby little hands. This book has been recommended to be a few times, so i am looking forward to reading it! And also, since i am getting low on English reading material, i am very happy to have something to beef up Mount (mole hill?) TBR. :) And thanks to Bibliocrates for the tea bag. I freeze most of the time up here in the andes, so herbal teas are a great thing! :)
Will journal more when i have gotten into it!
Started reading May 15, 2007
Great story--- he really is a great story-teller. And while this is meant for young adults, it really is for anyone. Lyra was a refreshingly adept, curious and strong character--- I really enjoyed reading about her adventures, but also about her reflections and musings on the world generally. I also liked that although this book is meant for kids, the good and bad stuff is not so clear cut--- i like shades of grey, especially in children's books.
The book had some twists and turns, but frankly they were not hard to see coming. What was more engaging was the purely fictional stuff--- the dust, the bears, etc... Excellent read, and i look forward to reading more of Phillip Pullman very soon.
Passing on to a friend in Huancavelica--- enjoy!
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
Left this in the book exchange shelf under the stairs, in the front lobby. Enjoy!