Philip Pullman

The Subtle Knife

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Novel Ideas returns with the first episode of year three, or Season 3, if you prefer. This week we are discussing Philip Pullman’s The Subtle Knife, sequel to The Golden Compass, second book in the “His Dark Materials” trilogy. In this episode we talk about trust, power, corruption, and moral ambiguity. We also touch on trilogy naming conventions, Sir Charles’s creepy vibe, trope subversion, and references to other things we have read and/or podcasted.

This week’s music bump is “Under the Knife” by Kansas because “Mack the Knife” seemed too obvious.

The Subtle Knife – EVIDENTLY


This book contains excellent world building and interesting characters, as well as adding to the universe of the story rather than rehashing what was popular the first time around. Read it. But first read The Golden Compass.

Gabs: 9/10 I love this damn book.

Ben: 9/10 All of those things.

The Golden Compass

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Welcome back to Novel Ideas, where banned book week lasts a month. This week’s episode is The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman, a book frequently challenged for having/being “religious content, violence, and age inappropriate” according to the American Library Association. We certainly have some opinions on whether this book is religious (sort of), violent (yes), and age inappropriate (if you’re a prude). Check out the podcast for the more in depth version of those opinions, in addition to discussions about daemons, witches, bears, and the country of Texas. Special appearance this week by Callie the cat, who had many opinions about this book and whether it should prevent podcast hosts from paying attention to her. (Hint: no.)

This week’s music bump is “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas, because I LOVE IT. Oh, also because there’s a lot of discussion about Dust in this book. So look for that. Enjoy!

25 – The Golden Compass – Bears and Witches and Texans, Oh My!