The second novel in The Dark Crystal series by J.M. Lee (again featuring illustrations by Cory Godbey) picks up just after the events of the first book, and actually ties in with episode four of The Age of Resistance series on Netflix, though some of the details of characters meeting have changed since the novel was written.
Still it’s easy to take these changes in stride as we return to the world of Thra, and see that the Skeksis are continuing their dark purpose there. As they continue to hold claim to the Castle of the Crystal, Naia, Kylan, and Tavra meet with characters we’ve seen on the show, and continue on their quest – they still plan to head to Ha’rar to see the All-Maudra (and Tavra’s mother) but now their purpose has changed.
They know what the Skeksis are doing, of the slow genocide they are beginning to perform on Gelfling and Podling kind, and they want to warn all of Thra at once. To do that will require dream-fasting (the connecting of two or more Gelfling minds) and perhaps so much more.
They head to High Hill to consult with Aughra, the oldest living being on Thra, and part of Thra itself, but their path will be thwarted by Skeksis encounters with the UrRu, and complications the party can’t foresee.
They are joined by another Gelfling, Amri from the cave dwelling Grottan clan, and set off to find an ancient relic that could help share the dangerous message with Gelfling kind.
The first book very much centered on Naia, and now the second book has shifted focus to Kylan as they continue their journey.
Their encounters hint at darker going-ons in the world that are shown in the series, and even as their quest continues forces array against them. Some in the least suspected of places.
I am really enjoying these novels, and I love how despite the fact that it seems Thra is being pushed to war, the Gelfling attempt to find a peaceful way to resist, to share the dangerous knowledge of the Skeksis, and how it’s done is just so… Thra.
This book puts me halfway through the journey, and I can’t wait to see what happens in the next book as our band of companions continue their quest (and how it meshes with the series).
This, so far, is one of those books that as I read it, I can see it all in my head, playing like a movie, I can see the cuts, the close-ups, the inserts, everything that would tell the story visually, and consequently, I am loving this adventure.
And I am loving my time on Thra. Next up is Tides of the Dark Crystal!