I am still suffering an almost quixotic heartbreak after finishing the final installment of this ingenious trilogy. It was such a sad ending, that brought tears to my eyes and an empathetic pain in my heart for poor Lyra and Will who carried this story to fruition. I say fruition, but there wasn’t actually a definitive ending. Just a love story left open, forever; “I will love you for ever, whatever happens. Till I die and after I die, and when I find my way out of the land of the dead I’ll drift about forever, all my atoms, till I find you again…”
I have never read a story so brilliantly creative, it was amazing to visualize and watch in my head as I read. These books are directed at teens/young adults and after reading about Philip I have come to learn that he values Children; “There are some themes, some subjects, too large for adult fiction; they can only be dealt with adequately in a children’s book.”
― Philip Pullman
I completely agree, it is only as a child or a young adult that you can fully appreciate the wonder of these books. Most adults would think the story was stupid and that children shouldn’t be filled with such unrealistic ideas. But where is the harm in believing that we have a soul that we can talk to, or that friendship is a stronger bond than any other or that a promise is a promise!
Why o why did they not make the second and third in the series into films!? I heard on the grapevine that The Golden Compass was a bit of a flop in the cinema and the Church sabotaged the sequels being created. I thought this was a little far fetched, however, after finishing the books I can see how the Church would render any reader a heretic, which is a ridiculous statement I know as it is just a book….but I do question whether Philip was massively anti religion. The below are just some examples of anti-religious elements in the book;
- After death you need to tell true stories to free your soul, there is no heaven or hell just release into the atoms of earth
- The angels; Baruch and Blathamos, the same sex, lovers who help Will find Lyra
- Naming our souls daemons and having them as a part of our being as opposed to something to tempt us.
- “Ah, but i knew about them. I used to be nun, you see. I though physics could be done to the glory of God, till I saw there wasn’t any God at all and that physics was more interesting anyway. The Christian religion is a very powerful and convincing mistake, that’s all.” Mary Malone
- “I stopped believing there was a power of good and a power of evil that were outside us. And I came to believe that good and evil are names for what people do, not for what they are.” Mary Malone
“I think it’s perfectly possible to explain how the universe came about without bringing God into it, but I don’t know everything, and there may well be a God somewhere, hiding away. Actually, if he is keeping out of sight, it’s because he’s ashamed of his followers and all the cruelty and ignorance they’re responsible for promoting in his name. If I were him, I’d want nothing to do with them.”
Do you know what, I think this book is massively open to interpretation, it is hard to even review as there are so many layers to these books, my favorite I think is the love story. Who doesn’t fall for a love story?
One final note, I wish I had a daemon in the form of an animal.