The Subtle Knife

Publisher: Scholastic

Where Northern Lights told Lyra’s story as daughter of the mysterious Lord Asriel and the terrifying Mrs Coulter, The Subtle Knife adds Will’s tale – another child abandoned by his mysterious father, and with a dangerous destiny of his own.

Finding a portal into another world, Will meets Lyra, who has also found herself in Citagazze, an abandoned city where children hide from murderous wraiths. In the centre of the city is a tower, and in the tower Will finds the Subtle Knife, a magical tool that can slice the thin membranes between worlds. When Will slices the membrane within Citagazze, he and Lyra find an alternative Oxford in which people do not have visible daimons and a scientist called Mary Malone is studying the Shadow Particle – which Lyra knows as Dust.

Meanwhile, pilot Lee Scoresby has found a man who calls himself The Shaman, and who leads him to find Lyra and Will. Will the children be able to keep the spectres of Citagazze out of the other worlds, and will Lee find them before the Magisterium do?

In this second instalment of the illustrated books of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials series, Chris Wormell has created another jaw-droppingly brilliant set of images that will delight existing fans and enthral new readers.

Wormell’s woodcut-based illustrations have a natural darkness and shadow, which is perfect for highlighting the sometimes scary themes in the story. As well as a number of full-page and smaller illustrations throughout the book, there is a brilliant appendix at the back featuring mysterious handwritten papers and maps of the Witch Lands belonging to Dr Stanislaus Grumman, otherwise known as Colonel John Parry.

More books like this

Night Speakers

Author: Ali Sparkes

An atmospheric supernatural thriller, in which three unlikely allies must solve an eerie mystery to put a stop to an escalating wave of killing that threatens their town.

Read more about Night Speakers

How to Catch a Witch

Author: Abie Longstaff

When 11-year-old Charlie and her family move to a creepy cottage in a strange village, she is lonely and miserable. Then she encounters Agatha: a retired witch. This spooky tale is an engaging combination of spells, friendship and self-belief.

Read more about How to Catch a Witch

Share this book with your friends

Use our Bookfinder to discover the perfect children's books for every age...