Lyra has been caught by her mother, Mrs. Coulter, who keeps her in a drugged sleep in a cave in the Himalayas (on their world). The Magisterium, provisionally Mrs. Coulter's ally, is not sure what she is up to, and sends out an assassin to kill Lyra because of the threat she poses to the world order. Will searches for and rescues Lyra, but accidentally shatters the subtle knife in his confrontation with Mrs. Coulter. Lyra decides she wants to travel to the land of the dead to make peace with her friend Roger, to whose death she feels she directed, and Will can finally speak to his father there. The two kids are accompanied by a pair of tiny Gallivespians, who ride dragonflies and serve as spies for Lord Asriel -- but no one has ever come back from the land of the dead! Meanwhile, Dr. Mary Malone, the physicist and ex-nun, has stepped through a window to a world of creatures with diamond-shaped legs that travel on seed pods that roll like wheels, and gets to know their ways before meeting her destiny in Lyra's and Will's fate. And the Magisterium and Lord Asriel gather up their forces for all-out war that will decide the fate of their world . . . and perhaps settle the problems that have unsettled the multiple worlds from which Lyra, Will, and various other characters and creatures hail. The conclusion of Pullman's trilogy is masterful, spellbinding, and unforgettable.
This report prepared by David Loftus