Saturday, July 31, 2010

Book Blast from the Past

This feature was inspired by a post by Eleni at La Femme Readers. My goal for this new feature is to go back to the books that I loved as a pre-teen/teen, and write about why I still enjoy them.

The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

Synopsis: The action follows 11-year-old protagonist Lyra Belacqua, accompanied by her daemon, from her home at Oxford University to the frozen wastes of the North, on a quest to save kidnapped children from the evil 'Gobblers,' who are using them as part of a sinister experiment. Lyra also must rescue her father from the Panserbjorne, a race of talking, armored, mercenary polar bears holding him captive. Joining Lyra are a vagabond troop of gyptians (gypsies), witches, an outcast bear, and a Texan in a hot air balloon. (From Barnes and Noble)

I first read The Golden Compass in the sixth grade, and I remember loving it (despite my teacher mispronouncing daemon, and proceeding to get upset with me when I pronounced it correctly during my book report). It was one of the first fantasy books that I read, and Pullman seemed to transport me into another world.

Of course, I grew to appreciate the book more as I got older. When I was young, the experience of reading The Golden Compass was all about Lyra's adventure to find her father, Lord Asriel, and her friend Roger. Now that I'm older, I'm more aware of the different themes throughout the book. I find it interesting that this universe is ruled by the Church, yet the story talks about destiny, and the idea of parallel universes.

The Golden Compass remains one of my favorite childhood books because it still challenges me to think about the world, religion, and pursuit of knowledge.


Eleni said...

So glad to hear I inspired you with this post! I never read The Golden Compass, I attempted to watch the movie but fell asleep. Did you think the movie lived up to the book?

Kristen said...

Ooo I loved reading this series in middle school. It was absolutely wonderful and I reread them a year or two back and really enjoyed it still! :) Glad to see a post on it. :)

Tales of Whimsy said...

I've always wondered about this one :)

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