Lawrence, Oxford, by Train, River, and Zeppelin, undated
Lyra's knowledge had great gaps in it, like a map of the world largely eaten by mice.
Philip Pullman, from The Golden Compass
As a passionate believer in the democracy of reading, I don't think it's the task of the author of a book to tell the reader what it means.
The meaning of a story emerges in the meeting between the words on the page and the thoughts in the reader's mind. So when people ask me what I meant by this story, or what was the message I was trying to convey in that one, I have to explain that I'm not going to explain.
Anyway, I'm not in the message business; I'm in the "Once upon a time" business.