As before, graphic and concept are taken with grateful acknowledgement to Breaking the Spine
There are plenty of books and worlds from my childhood that I would love to revisit for longer than the available texts allow.
Funnily enough, despite the fact that I adored the Potterverse, I still haven’t read the Cursed Child script, even six months later. But other worlds, other writers, I have long wished to be able to return to them.
Sometimes, just sometimes, a wish is granted. Garth Nix returned to the Old Kingdom after a break of twelve years, bringing out two new stories which bracketed his original trilogy and making my inner fangirl absolutely explode with excitement.
There are other books from my childhood that I would equate to the Old Kingdom, though, and would love to return to. Marianne Curley’s Guardians of Time trilogy is a long-time favourite of mine that I would love to read more about. Cliff McNish’s The Doomspell series was one I really loved. Philip Pullman’s Sally Lockhart books never failed to enthral me, all four instalments, and I would be more than terribly excited if I were able to return to the Singer world of William Nicholson’s Wind on Fire trilogy.
Sometimes, though. Sometimes, wishes do come true. It happened for the Old Kingdom, and it’s happening again this year. His Dark Materials, which I loved, and my older sister couldn’t stand, is one series that I read, loved, cried over, re-read, still loved, and cried over again. Lyra’s Oxford, when it was published, was a delight, although it didn’t look as good on the shelf next to the original matching trilogy as I had hoped, mostly because it didn’t have a black spine.
Last week, Pullman announced the publication date of the first book in his non-prequel, non-sequel, but rather ‘equel’ trilogy The Book of Dust, which is set in the same multiverse as His Dark Materials, and will centre around Lyra but also introduce new characters.
I am super, super excited to return to Lyra’s Oxford and Will’s Oxford, re-meet the armoured bears and the witches, and learn more about Dust. The first book in the trilogy releases on October 19th and I cannot wait! I’m hoping that a return to one of my childhood favourites will be everything I’ve hoped for, and am now counting down until that release date. unfortunately, this also means that I’m going to have to do it two more times for the second and third in the trilogy, but I guess sometimes a little pain will enhance the pleasure when they eventually are released.
Roll on 19th October!