Book Reviews, Fantasy, Kids' Corner, Middle Grade

Kids’ Corner: Book Review of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia) by C.S. Lewis

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Does anyone have a time machine laying around?  If so, I would like to borrow it to travel back into time and make my 11 year old self read this book.

thelionthewitchandthewardrobeAuthor: C.S. Lewis

Genre: Middle Grade/Young Adult • Fantasy

Version: Audiobook (4h 23min listening length)

Narrator: Michael York

Publisher: HarperAudio

Source:  Hoopla

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Book Synopsis:

‘They say Aslan is on the move. Perhaps he has already landed,’ whispered the Beaver. Edmund felt a sensation of mysterious horror. Peter felt brave and adventurous. Susan felt as if some delightful strain of music had just floated by. And Lucy got that feeling when you realize it’s the beginning of summer. So, deep in the bewitched land of Narnia, the adventure begins.

They opened a door and entered a world–Narnia–the land beyond the wardrobe, the secret country known only to Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy. Lucy is the first to stumble through the back of the enormous wardrobe in the professor’s mysterious old country house, discovering the magic world beyond. At first, no one believes her. But soon Edmund, Peter and Susan, too, discover the magic and meet Aslan, the Great Lion, for themselves. And in the blink of an eye, they are changed forever.


My Thoughts:

 This was my first time experiencing C.S. Lewis in its written form, and that is just what it was, an experience. Of course I knew this story growing up from the 1979 cartoon version, then later in the 2005 movie adaptation, but there is just something magical about this book.  It isn’t often that I get a feelings that mirrored those I felt the first time I read the Harry Potter series, but that is just what The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe did.  This book took me back to when I was 11 years old staying up way past my bedtime to read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.  I wish I could go back in time and throw this book at my 11 year old self…I feel like I really missed out with this one by not reading it as a kid.   Not that I didn’t appreciate this book as an adult, but there is just something about experiencing books like this through a child’s eyes.

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The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe is such a versatile book.  It can appeal to such a wide range of readers: from middle grade up to adult.  There is something for everyone: an enchanting world, magic, action, adventure, mythical creatures, an evil witch, and a talking lion.  Not only that, but this book has such timeless themes like good vs. evil, friendship, sibling bonds,  courage, love, hope, forgiveness, etc.  The list goes on and on.

Yet again I have read another book with some wonderful symbolism that I didn’t pick up on as I was reading it.  It was so much easier to pick up symbolism in books when I was in school and the teacher would basically point everything out to me.   Generally after I read a classic, I look up the analysis of the plot, characters, themes, and symbols,  to make sure I didn’t miss anything… which I am ashamed to admit is often times the case.  Apparently, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe draws many parallels to Christianity.  For example: Aslan = Jesus, White Witch = Satin, Edmund = Judas, Turkish delights = temptation, etc.   The biblical symbolism was basically right in front of my face and I didn’t pick it up… what makes this worse is the fact that I went to catholic schools from K-12th grade.  I know a few nuns who are probably rolling in their graves right now.

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What I loved the most about this book was the way C.S. Lewis chose to tell the story TO the reader.  It truly felt like I was a part of the story. Like it was being told to me by an old friend. If you are looking for a book to read with your kids, I cannot recommend this book more. What a perfect book to read during the holidays.  I mean, the big man himself (Santa) even makes an appearance in this book.  Can we say stocking stuffer? ((Hint Hint))

I chose to listen to this book via audiobook, and I could not be happier with my decision.   The audiobook version won the Publisher’s Weekly Listen Up Award and I can definitely see why.  It is beautifully narrated by Michael York who has a smooth voice and a lovely British accent to boot.  Michael has now earned a spot as one of my favorite audiobook narrators.


Other Book Recommendations:

» The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling

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»  A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

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» The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

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My Rating:

5-Star Rating System

 


About the Author:

c-s-lewisCLIVE STAPLES LEWIS (1898–1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day. He was a Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Oxford University until 1954. He was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement. He wrote more than thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers every year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include Mere Christianity, Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the universally acknowledged classics The Chronicles of Narnia. To date, the Narnia books have sold over 100 million copies and been transformed into three major motion pictures.

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34 thoughts on “Kids’ Corner: Book Review of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia) by C.S. Lewis”

  1. I read this book last year to my seven year old daughter last year. I remember really loving it as a kid. Mr. Tumnus and Lucy sipping tea, wondering what Turkish Delight tasted like. But when I read the line “They say Aslan is on the move.” to her I got chills all over. I knew I’d loved the book as a child, but didn’t realize what an impact it had on me. I’m very happy that she loves it too. She got tired of waiting for me to read it to her at night, finished it on her own and has read it over again since then. We both agree, that Mr. Tumnus, just the best.

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  2. Simply beautiful and deserving write up of a fantastic classic that brings such a strong sense of nostalgia and happiness to me with the mere mention of its title. My son and I have read this and I uses to read it to my youngest sister. It has always and will always held a place on my shelf and in my heart.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Fabulous review!! I haven’t read this yet but have always wanted to read it. And it sounds like my son would love it too. He’s currently reading HP. Honestly, I probably would have missed the biblical references if you hadn’t told me. But now I’ll know to look for them 😉 Thanks for the wonderful review, Amanda! Great photo, too!

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  4. Now I totally know I’m not a whole person yet, as I haven’t read this book yet!! #shameonme!!! I have the whole Narnia Chronicles at home, dusting away on my shelves… Ugh, I need to pick those up soon!! Pressure me, Amanda! Please ❤ HAHAHA! Loved your review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Do it, do it!!! Perfect Christmas time read (if you celebrate Christmas of course) all cozied up by a fire with a mug of cocoa… Unless of course it isn’t winter where you are lol I *think* you said you live in Brazil? Or am I making that up? From why the internet tells me, it is Spring time in Brazil, so maybe a rainy day read lol

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yup, Brazilian girl here! Hahahaha I’m touched you remember, I think I mentioned it only once or twice in all our talks so far, haha! ❤ ❤ A rainy day read it will be, as I'm looking to the fat droplets on my window as I type you this reply, hahaha! Also, my family does celebrate Christmas, so I think I'm going to make myself stop being lazy and read it through December ❤

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  5. Hahahaha Don’t worry, I went to a Catholic school too and I’m so atheist they would roll in their graves even more 😀

    Lovely review, I haven’t even watched the popular film 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha that is awesome 😂 Were you an atheist while in school or did the school convert you lol

      Omg the film is amazing!!! One of the best film adaptations in my opinion… perfect movie to watch during Christmas time (if you celebrate)

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      1. To be honest, the school converted me. Almost everyone in my class finished school as an atheist lol Anyway, yes, I celebrate Christmas with the family 😄 I’m not that “rebel” hahaha

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      2. Hahaha Typical catholic school where they made you go to church every now and then and sing church songs. No nuns, they were called “teresianas”. Old-fashioned 😄

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  6. I’m so glad that you read this!! I renewed my complete LOVE for this series when I reread the whole thing last year. I think TLTWATW (wow what an ancronym) is one of the few books that I got through when I was younger, back in the dark days when I hated reading. I find the religious symbolism in this book to actually be very clever but by the time I got to the last book, I can’t deny I felt a little overwhelmed by how increasingly prominent it had become – but that’s probably just me. I wish I could send you back in time too so that you could have enjoyed this when you were younger!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I also didn’t read Chronicles until I was an adult, but I didn’t seem to connect with it the same way you did. I wonder if that has to do with your audiobook experience? I find that when a story is being told, instead of experienced, I enjoy it more in audiobook form. Thanks for linking out to PW! I’ll certainly have to check out their audiobook awards.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This audiobook is one of the best narrated ones I’ve listened to. I’m not sure what it was about this book. It is possible that the fact that I loved the movie adaptation influenced my experience. Like you said, since this was a story told to the reader, the audiobook really made me feel like I was being told a bedtime story ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

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