Book Review: The Chronicles of Narnia

I realize that everyone read The Chronicles of Narnia when they were in middle school but for some strange reason, I purposed in my heart never to read it. (Probably because someone I hated in school read them. Petty, I know). But I have finally decided to give it a go. I’ve seen all the movies they have out currently, so those may bias me I am afraid. I decided to do one big post about all seven books. But don’t worry, they won’t all be super long. I’ll split up the post by book and give any important thoughts on each. If you want to skim around, I tried to make stuff easy to find.

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Overall Rating: 4/5

4/5 The Magician’s Nephew:  Over all, I found this book to be quite interesting. At first I assumed we would like the Professor (like in the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe) But alas, he turned out to be quite horrible. I quickly identified this story to be parallel to the creation story in Genesis. I think it was rather clever to hide those ideas in a fiction story. I enjoyed Polly’s character in this story because I think that I would be her in that situation. I think I was a Polly as a child. I think this was a perfect origin story.

4/5 The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe: For this book, my friend told me that it was nothing like the movie. And in a sense, she was right. But I think the movie-makers did a fine job adapting this story. They did add a little plot to increase the length of the movie and add a bit of drama. But the basic plot-line was the same. You can really feel how sorry Edmund is for turning against everyone. But apparently, the witch’s Turkish Delight was magical enough to cause him to do whatever it took to get more. Although, he could have resisted had he chosen to. This story I related to Jesus dying on the cross. Edmund is a character you begin hating, but end up loving.

3/5 The Horse and His Boy: Knowing this book wasn’t going to be about Peter and his siblings saddened me a bit. But I genuinely tried to like the story for what it is. I honestly didn’t think it was very interesting until we got to the point when Rabadash took his army to take Queen Susan. I had a feeling that the fact that Shasta looked like the price would come to be important. My favorite part of this book was when Edmund said that even a traitor may mend, I know one who did. He is calling upon his past experience when dealing with Rabadash the traitor. This is why Aslan called him King Edmund the Just. Him, above all the rest has a different understanding and can deal fairly with people. Which I think means he would have the most faith in people next to Lucy.

4/5 Prince Caspian: In this story, the movie was almost nothing like the book (just like my friend said). Meaning, certain events were put in the wrong place and other events taken out all together. But I think I like the book better than the movie for this one. There are just a couple very small things that I wish the book had that the movie added. Like Edmund reading the letter to Miraz and the sass that follows. One thing I am glad never happened in the book was the first attack on the castle where Peter had to leave a bunch of Narnians behind the gate. That scene made me sad and now I know that it really isn’t cannon. My heart swelled with happiness when Edmund stuck up for Lucy. He learned real quick to trust her instincts. It says in this book that Lucy was Peter’s favorite, but I would challenge that by saying Lucy is Edmund’s favorite. At least Ed tends to show it more. Susan was kind of a drag in this one (Like, don’t you remember who you freaking are!)

3/5 The Voyage of The Dawn Treader

I saw the movie of this book before reading it. So I had my pre-made biases. I think the movie did some things right and some things wrong. The book delves deeper into the adventure but doesn’t have the drama the movie did. The big thing the movie did right was casting Eustace. The actor they got for his character was spot on! One quote from the book that they really should have had in the movie was what Edmund said to Eustice. He said that really Eustace was doing better than he did his first time to Narnia. Eustice was just an ass, Edmund was a traitor. This is also the book that I could really see why Lucy was called Queen Lucy the Valiant. She loves adventure more than her sister Susan did. Riding on a ship was more appealing to her and she was brave through every danger. The one thing that slightly irritates me about her character is how she was tempted to cast the spell to maker her beautiful. I just don’t see that flaw in her. She is not vain. Eustace was the comic relief of the story. If you really think about it, we would act the same as he if we were just thrown into Narnia without knowing anything about it. I hope he comes back in the next book. At this point, none of the Pevensie children can come back 😦 I enjoyed this book in the series and continue to love C.S. Lewis’s writing style/voice.

The Silver Chair 4/5

I think, so far, that this story is my favorite next to The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe. I have grown very fond of Eustace and I think this book has really shown how much he has grown. (although you can tell when he gets ticked that a bit of his old self is still there). In this story, King Caspian’s son is missing and Jill and Eustace are tasked with finding him. Their journey takes them to a city of giants and the Underworld. To my great delight, there is a silver chair and it does play a big role in the plot. I heard that a movie will be made of this book soon. so I am happy to have read the book first. I find Eustace and Jill quite entertaining. I still enjoy C.S. Lewis’s writing style, but after 6 straight books, I will be happy for a change in writing style. There never fails to be some kind of Biblical lesson I can pull from each story and apply it to my own life. I kind of wish I knew how the Pevensies’s were doing.

The Final Battle 4/5

Wow, what an ending to a very interesting series. I really was quite depressing for a while there. I really hated Shift the Ape. But this story is a perfect metaphor for when God comes to take us home. The ending was my favorite part. I loved seeing all the characters from before come together and talk. Although Susan wasn’t there. She got caught up in makeup and having a fabulous life. But I read somewhere that C.S. Lewis wasn’t done with her character yet, so we can only hope and speculate. Overall, it was a very happy and pleasing ending to the series. Warning for major spoilers here! But I’m sad everyone had to die in the end. They all died in the train crash. But I was also very confused about those circumstances. Eustace and Jill didn’t die? It’s pretty sad. Susan is the only one left and now suddenly everyone she loves is dead. This series leaves you with a sense of hope that I like. I like how Aslan explained to the young boy about how even though he wasn’t directly serving Aslan…The good he did counted.

 

Wow, that series took me a long time to finish, but I did it. If you have read the books which one was your favorite? I think The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe was my favorite. Edmund, Lucy & Eustace were my favorite characters. I will still enjoy the movies (even though they aren’t as accurate as they could be) Now I feel like I can truly be a fan of Narnia. Hope you enjoy my thoughts on this series.

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