Thursday, December 06, 2007

The Golden Compass

The Golden Compass, Book 1 of Philip Pullman's Dark Materials Trilogy, has been made into a movie and is being released this weekend so I thought this might be a good time to talk about it. These books were wildly popular in the late 90s and early 00s but I've only just recently gotten around to reading them and have yet to read The Amber Spyglass (Book 3). The Golden Compass is set in a world that is like ours, but also quite different, in which people are deeply connected to their Daemons, an external, animal manifestation of a soul. Lyra Belacqua is an eleven year old orphan being raised by the scholars and servants of Jordan College in the Oxford of her world. She spends her time playing war with her friend Roger and the other groups of children around Oxford, but all that changes when she overhears conversations about a mysterious substance called dust, and a group called the gobblers who are kidnapping children. After her friend Roger goes missing Lyra embarks on a journey to rescue him from the gobblers and learn more about dust. The alethiometer (golden compass) helps her on her quest. During her journey Lyra also learns about her parents and the existence of other worlds. I don't read a lot of fantasy but I really enjoyed the first two books and look forward to reading the third. Maybe I'll even see the movie during Christmas vacation. If you've read the book or see the movie, tell me what you think?

3 comments:

Rosemary said...

I haven't read the books yet, but now I'm definitely planning to. When I was doing research for my research paper on Ender's Game, I came across this title; an author was comparing "The Golden Compass" to "Ender's Game!" And since I enjoyed Ender's Game" so much, I was thinking about reading it. And then you recommended it... so I'll be reading it now.
But what kills me is, I just don't have time to pleasure read anymore. I would be reading during SSR, except that time is cram time (reading the textbook) for AP Bio. So I'm definitely looking forward to Christmas break . . .

Mrs. Young said...

It's so unfortunate that SSR isn't everything it's supposed to be for everyone. I think SSR is such a gift and I look forward to it every day. I bought a copy of The Amber Spyglass this weekend and will be reading it during SSR today!

MKL said...

I read all three books a long time ago, but I didn't really enjoy them. I was never really a fan of fantasy either (until Harry Potter came along). A science fiction series I did enjoy was the Pendragon series, although they were probably geared toward a younger generation. Those books werealso about saving worlds and the connectedness of everything, and for some reason they just appealed to me more than the Dark Materials Triology.