I’ve read His Dark Materials twice all the way through. The first time I was about…. ten, I think, and my main memory of that is going to see Philip Pullman give a talk just before The Amber Spyglass came out, during which I covered my ears when he read an excerpt because I hadn’t read the book yet and I didn’t want to get spoiled. (Sorry Philip.)
The second time, I was sixteen and on a family holiday in the summer after my GCSEs. I read all three books curled up on the bed in the tiny cavern room in the converted train station we were renting and eventually staggered out at the end, weeping, for emergency cereal.
With The Book of Dust just released this week, I thought it would be a good time to reread His Dark Materials again before carrying on with the series. I don’t have Lyra’s Oxford or Once Upon a Time in the North with me, so I can’t reread those, but I’m going to get through the main three before picking up Book of Dust. WHAT A FUN EMOTIONAL TIME WE WILL ALL HAVE. A JOY. NO EMOTIONAL TRAUMA HERE. NO SIRREE.
I figured it would be fun to see what I remembered from the series before rereading it again as, you know, a nominal adult. Then when I’m done I can look back and be like WOW WELL DONE MOOG THOSE SURE ARE SOME C-PLOT MEMORIES.
Warning for spoilers below for all three books, just to be safe.