A race towards destiny Mar 23, 2010
In this second book of the "His Dark Materials" trilogy, Lyra leaves the captivatingly created world in which the entire first book took place. Despite my reluctance for the narrative to leave Lyra's world, I was ultimately caught up even more tightly in the new worlds into which she ventures. Pullman's creativity really caught fire here, and his skill in committing these flights of imagination to the page is nearly unmatched in other contemporary young adult authors. I literally could not put the book down except to do the most basic tasks, such as eating and sleeping when I absolutely HAD to.
"The Subtle Knife" may simply be a transitional book between the beginning and the denouement of Lyra's story, but it hurtles with the pace of a freight train, making for a very exciting read. One of the most effective aspects of Pullman's storytelling is that despite the heart-pounding, frantic speed of the narrative, he still somehow makes time for deep, intricate characterizations of his protagonists and antagonists. I always felt like I was reading about real people in these fantastical circumstances.
This book is a wonderful continuation of the very complex story begun in the first installment.