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on 21 August 2008
I throughly enjoyed this book. I was a little disappointed that it was so short as i wanted to keep reading, hence how good it was. This was the only reason i didn't give it a 5 star.
The book was a nice addition to the dark materials series. It gave me a insight to lee scorsby the aeronaut, this was interesting and enjoyable as we dont hear so much about him in the other books.
The prensentation of the book was brillant. It has a nice cover and not only that it includes a board game which was mentioned in the book. I throughly enjoyed playing it.

Overall i would say it was a very welcome addition to his dark materails series. My next book will be lyras oxford as i am sure it will be another interesting insight into lyras world.
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VINE VOICEon 16 May 2011
Before Lee Scoresby, Texan aeronaut and adventurer, swung his way into Pullman's Northern Lights Trilogy in his dirigible he landed in the Arctic oil town of Novy Odensk. Scoresby being who he is it wasn't long before he was forced to fight his way out of the town with the help of his new friend, the mighty polar bear Iorek Byrnison. This is that story, beautifully packaged in a little blue fabric bound hardback illustrated with enchanting engravings by John Lawrence and sprinkled with intriguing ephemera. At the back is a board game 'Peril of the Pole' complete with spinner and game pieces.

This is the kind of book you enjoy having in your hands and is a delightful diminutive companion to the epic Northern Lights.
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on 11 April 2015
Great!
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on 21 January 2011
Philip Pullman is my favourite author. He writes brilliant, captivating stories, and this is no exception. Although the book is short (which is, as other people have pointed out, disappointing because you want more), this cannot be held against the book itself, as it only acts as a reinforcement of how brilliant the writing is.
Even better; having more information on the some of the characters from the trilogy, and how they came to be, but also the bonus of games, illustrations etc.
You won't be disappointed. A high a standard as could be wanted. Loved it.
Hoping for more prequels/sequels!
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on 19 March 2017
Crisp,clean beautiful writing
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on 18 August 2008
Having recently read HDM I was keen to read more of Pullman's work, so bought this one. A very enjoyable, very short story. I read it twice on the day it arrived.
The cover/binding is absolutely lovely.
I was a little perplexed by the 'Lyra letters' at the end as these appear to be dated after the HDM adventure, whereas the 'North' was well before.
Here's hoping that 'Dust' will be out soon rather than another short story.
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on 20 February 2014
Having really enjoyed the imaginative, thought-provoking and compelling Dark Materials trilogy, I bought this with no hesitation and it proved a satisfying read. Being a novella it lacked the depth of the longer books but I enjoyed the insight into the earlier lives of familiar characters - Lee Scoresby was always a favourite of mine, as was the great fighting bear Iorek Byrnison.
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on 23 June 2013
If you have read the "His Dark Materials" trilogy then this book is an absolute must. It has all the action that you would expect from a tale involving the characters of Lee Scorsby and Iorek Bernison. It is easy to devour in one sitting because of Pullman's excellent storytelling and made me want to delve into the original trilogy once more.
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on 9 September 2008
This prequel is the story of how Lee Scoresby met Iorek Byrnison (characters in the His Dark Materials trilogy, and if you haven't read that, better to start there than here). It might fairly be classed as a ripping yarn. It's a tale well told, charmingly illustrated with engravings by John Lawrence: inessential but fun.
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on 3 March 2016
An enjoyable return to the world of His Dark Materials, exploring a key incident early in Lee Scoresby's career. Brief but entertaining, with enough layers and excitement to make me wish it were a full length novel. Or series. Makes me want to go back and read His Dark Materials again.
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