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review 2018-04-15 15:34
Highly recommended prequel
The Book of Dust: La Belle Sauvage (Book of Dust, Volume 1) - Philip Pullman

This first prequel to the Dark Materials trilogy is a joy to read. It sets up a lot of what transpires in the successful trilogy regarding Lyra, a newborn baby in this book. Introducing Malcolm and Alice as well as many other important characters, the book tells us about various agencies trying to take Lyra for their own purposes.

The writing is engaging and fluid and entraps the reader into the plot. Highly recommended.

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review 2018-04-05 19:11
The Amber Spyglass / Philip Pullman
The Amber Spyglass - Philip Pullman

Will is the bearer of the knife. Now, accompanied by angels, his task is to deliver that powerful, dangerous weapon to Lord Asriel - by the command of his dying father.

But how can he go looking for Lord Asriel when Lyra is gone? Only with her help can he fathom the myriad plots and and intrigues that beset him.

The two great powers of the many worlds are lining up for war, and Will must find Lyra, for together they are on their way to battle, an inevitable journey that will even take them to the world of the dead...


I’m rating this at 4 stars, but really I feel like it should be 4.25 or 4.3 or something like that.  Although I didn’t love it as much as the first two books, I found it to be a realistic and satisfying ending to the trilogy.


It was great to see Iorek Byrnison, the armoured, talking polar bear, again.  He gets to be the voice of the natural world, warning against doing something “just because you can” and about unknown consequences of actions.  Pullman had managed to include so many interesting creatures to inhabit all of his parallel universes!  Witches, dæmons, angels, spectres, gyptians, ghosts, just to mention a few.


Lyra & Will are on the cusp of adulthood in this book, but have already taken on adult-level responsibilities.  They handle them much better than I would have at the same age!  But didn’t we all feel “all grown up” at that stage?  I couldn’t understand why adults didn’t see me the same way!  Their reluctance to trust me with any kind of burden seemed very insulting to me at 17 or 18 years.


I can also see why very religious people wouldn’t care for Pullman’s worldview, but since I’m not a religious person, I was perfectly comfortable with it.  A recommended series.

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text 2018-03-29 19:09
TBR Thursday
The House at Baker Street (A Mrs Hudson and Mary Watson Investigation) - Michelle Birkby
Vlad: The Last Confession - C.C. Humphreys
The Amber Spyglass - Philip Pullman
The Awakening of Miss Prim: A Novel - Natalia Sanmartin Fenollera
Corvus - Harold Johnson
The Dirty Book Club - Lisi Harrison
Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World - Alfred Birnbaum,Haruki Murakami

A couple of hang-overs from last week:  The House on Baker Street and Vlad : the Last Confession.  They'll move to the top of the pile, as will The Amber Spyglass, because it has holds on it at the library.  Its my PopSugar challenge book for the "Childhood Classic You've Never Read" category.


Two books are about books and/or librarians:  The Awakening of Miss Prim and The Dirty Book Club.  They will both count towards book challenges as well, plus they sound like a lot of fun.


Corvus is a book by Harold Johnson, who will be a guest of honor at this year's When Words Collide conference here in Calgary.  I try to read something written by all the guests of honor before the conference, which takes place in August.


And, last but not least, another entry in the Science Fiction and Fantasy Reading Project:  Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami.


I've got at least two Easter celebrations to attend, requiring a bit of driving, then I've booked myself the Monday off as well.  So, two days to get my house in order, a bit of laundry done, and a new toilet purchased to be ready for the plumber the next week.  Not sure how much reading will take place, but I have no doubt that some will.


Happy Easter, everyone!


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text 2018-03-04 11:41
Reading progress update: I've read 308 out of 399 pages.
Northern Lights - Philip Pullman

Dramatic rescue!

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text 2018-03-03 16:52
Reading progress update: I've read 268 out of 399 pages.
Northern Lights - Philip Pullman

The sinister Mrs Coulter re-appears! shudder

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