Saturday, April 18, 2020

Lyra's Oxford


In this His Dark Materials short story, occurring two years after the end of the main trilogy, Lyra and her daemon Pantalaimon, now in pine-marten form, are back at Oxford when the daemon of the witch Yelena, Ragi, seeks a healing elixir to cure his witch. A quote from Oscar Baedecker’s The Coasts of Bohemia precedes the narrative, as does a nonsensical indicator of its content. The story itself opens with Lyra ascending to the roof of Jordan College, with birds going mad, and Lyra seeking the alchemist Makepeace. The story doesn’t have the antireligious commentary of the main books, which isn’t a bad thing, but is otherwise unmemorable and unimportant.

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