Emma Patton


Significant Shortcomings, Young Adult, Adventure, religion, animals, spies

Document Type

Book Review


Malcolm Polstead doesn’t have much chance for adventure. His parents run an inn, and he keeps himself entertained by listening to the customers and watching them interact. He visits the nuns at the nearby priory, rides in his boat called La Belle Sauvage, and, of course, is very close with his daemon—a part of Malcolm’s own consciousness that exists in animal form and goes with him everywhere. But there is unrest brewing in Malcolm’s town, and he quickly finds himself involved. It all begins when a baby, Lyra, is brought to the priory to be sheltered and protected by the nuns. Strange people start coming to the inn to ask questions about the baby, and Malcolm tries to figure out why. Meanwhile, the church, which rules the society, tightens its grip on all the citizens. With tensions running high and confusing stories flying around, Malcolm aims to discover the truth and do anything he can to protect baby Lyra.