Olivier Bonneville was a young man from Lyra's world who was employed by the Magisterium to read the alethiometer. He was the inventor of the new method of reading the instrument however this could make the reader feel sick. His dæmon was a sparrowhawk.
Olivier was employed by Marcel Delamare to read the alethiometer for La Maison Juste. He was quicker than the other readers in the Magisterium and had found a new method of reading the alethiometer: pointing all hands to a particular symbol and letting the mind relax. This idea quickly spread around scholars.
Olivier began to look for the girl Lyra Silvertongue and went to the Café Cosmopolitain at the time of the Magisterial Congress when the girl was 20 to find out more information. He was looking for people who knew a man called Matthias Sylberberg and saw a group of men: Monsieur Rattin, Alexander Pochinsky and Eric Schlosser. He went over to their table and, after catching their drinks which a waiter dropped, sat down to speak with them.
Olivier had recognised Rattin from the Rovelli show at Tennier's gallery two weeks prior. Olivier flattered them whilst his dæmon went to talk to Rattin's dæmon, hoping to get some information about Lyra. Olivier found out about Marcel's sister, Marisa Coulter and how Lyra had come to be born.
Olivier had black hair and, at first, looked like William Parry to Lyra. He had a strong jaw and was slim, fierce, arrogant and looked around 20.