His Dark Materials prequel title and hero revealed in new excerpt


The first installment in the His Dark Materials series in almost two decades finally has a title. It also has a hero and a brief excerpt featured in The Guardian.

Earlier this year, author Phillip Pullman announced some long-awaited news. The best-selling His Dark Materials trilogy is finally getting a follow-up, 17 years after the release of The Amber Spyglass.

Now, there are more details about The Book of Dust trilogy. The Guardian reveals that the first book is titled La Belle Sauvage. It’s due out October 19, 2017 in hardback, ebook, and audiobook from Penguin Random House Children’s UK.

The Guardian is also featuring an exclusive excerpt from chapter ten.

Pullman said in February that The Book of Dust will center on Lyra Belacqua, the hero of His Dark Materials. He also said that the hero of this new trilogy is someone fans of the book would know.

The excerpt in The Guardian reveals that the hero of La Belle Sauvage is Malcolm Polsta, whose daemon is named Asta. In the excerpt, he is a 10 year-old boy who helps Lord Asriel secretly visit his baby daughter and then escape in a canoe.

Malcolm is the scholar Lyra writes to about her dissertation. His age in this excerpt reveals that The Book of Dust will follow Lyra from her infancy to adulthood. Malcolm’s role is yet to be determined — only so much can be gleaned from one chapter excerpt. However, it’s already clear that his role in her life as we know it will be significant.

La Belle Sauvage, which in this context likely translates to “Savage Beauty”, is also the name of Malcolm’s canoe. Pullman has said the canoe plays a large role throughout the upcoming trilogy.

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Until the book has an official synopsis, this tidbit may be the only thing to keep fans’ curiosity at bay. It’s high time to re-read His Dark Materials so the text is fresh before October.