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HDM: Dark Materials -- SPOILERS

[ Edited ]
I realize that this series of books was written for children, but they were recommended to me and I enjoyed them all completely! Difficult to put down!

Message Edited by ConnieK on 10-05-2007 09:10 AM
Distinguished Wordsmith
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Registered: ‎11-01-2006
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Re: Dark Materials

I agree!!!
The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep - Robert Frost
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Registered: ‎07-30-2007
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Re: Dark Materials

I find that books often refered to as "young adult" take me on a more fantastic journey than the adult fiction I also read. It is almost as if the stories can go in any direction where anything can happen without having to set up pages and pages worth of "how" it all works. Children more readily accept the possiblity that anything can happen. The authors use that to their advantage and to our benefit. While I love descriptive narratives, I don't always want a 10 page explanation as to how the science of some time machine works...I'd rather just see what happens when you turn the durn thing on! I think that is why imaginative adults so enjoy "childrens" novels. I mean, we don't need to understand the extreme exostential relationship that would allow one's "soul" to be on the outside of their bodies...we just accept that in Lyra's world, they are...end of story.

Pullman, Lewis, Rowling, and many, many, many other great authors of young adult fiction are finally being recognized...and I LOVE IT!!

""I now view my long road as a search for truth in my own heart, in the world around me, and in the bigger questions of purpose and of existence. How does one define good and evil." --Drizzt Do'Urden
Distinguished Bibliophile
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Review of Ideas Presented in HDM

I wasn't sure where to put this but this thread looks like it might work OK. I have been doing some web research and I came across an article with some interesting ideas about Pullman and his ideas behind the series and also a discussion of the value of so called children's books being read by adults including Harry Potter.

Unfortunately, this is a done series and it is almost impossible to avoid spoilers and this article has some. They don't look too material to spoil the reading of the books. But be warned.
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Registered: ‎11-08-2006
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Re: Dark Materials: Point of View: Spoilers

[ Edited ]
The next book in the series is somewhat of a departure in style from the first book. I just want to point this out here so that those now reading the GC might note that the book is almost entirely written from Lyra's viewpoint except for the times when the prophecy comes up and the abduction of the children by Mrs. Coulter. Beyond those situations, we only know what Lyra knows and we see the world through her eyes. I might add that this is the way Harry Potter was written as well.


I started the next book and find that each chapter shifts its point of view from chapter to chapter as we follow different characters in different worlds. TGC is Lyra's book, she is the center, and it is an action story with only a hint about some underlying issues. In TSK she is still a major player (though I don't think as much in control of things as she was in TGC) but she must now share the center of attention, there is much she doesn't know about what is happening in the story, and the focus of the story is more on ideas. There is still action taking place but the focus has definitely shifted.

Message Edited by BarbaraN on 09-19-2007 03:14 PM
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Re: Dark Materials: In Summary of the Golden Compass

In his introduction to Book XII of Paradise Lost, Pullman quotes the first couple of lines of this segment (below) of the poem.

The Archangel Michael has been telling Adam and Eve, just before their expulsion from Paradise, what the future history of the world will be like. I thought this was a good summation of the situation we find in the first book of the trilogy, The Golden Compass. I have shortened it a little--Milton does take a long time to say something. This also reflects what I have come to see as the position of Mrs. Coulter and other Church leaders who seem to profess religious ideals and then do something horrible, like sever children from their daemons, an act, no matter how misconstrued the justification, none-the-less seems to go against their own declared theology..

Book XII Paradise Lost
Starting Line 508

Wolves shall succeed for teachers, grievous Wolves,
Who all the sacred mysteries of Heav'n
To thir own vile advantages shall turne [ 510 ]
Of lucre and ambition, and the truth
With superstitions and traditions taint,
Then shall they seek to avail themselves of names, [ 515 ]
Places and titles, and with these to joine
Secular power, though feigning still to act
By spiritual, to themselves appropriating
The Spirit of God, promisd alike and giv'n
To all Beleevers; and from that pretense, [ 520 ]
Spiritual Lawes by carnal power shall force
On every conscience;
Religion satisfi'd; Truth shall retire [ 535 ]
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