Genre: Young Adult/Middle Grade/Fantasy/Adventure/Classic
Publication Date: October 16, 1950
Themes: Courage, Bravery, Friendship, Sibling Bond, Determination
Young Lucy walks into a wardrobe that leads to an amazing world called Narina. A world where animals talk, winter is year round, an evil witch who is trying to take over, and a great lion who can help them. After some convincing, her siblings, Edmund, Susan, and Peter, enter with Lucy and the adventure that awaits them is one they will never forget.
Such a lovely adventure! I read this one, and the other books in the series, once before. I didn’t read the series as a child, but when I was older. However, I still remember being lost in the Narnia world, which still held true here.
It was very easy to picture the snowy and cold scenes as the children try to escape from the White Witch. I could easily see all the furry creatures circling this magical world, and it was great to see some illustrations to accompany certain scenes. Due to the easy-to-imagine scenery and the illustrations, I feel it would be easy for upper elementary children to visualize what Narnia looks like.
I found the characters endearing, even with Edmund being led astray. Though there could have been a bit more on Susan and Peter to distinguish them a bit more than the others, I don’t feel young readers would get too confused on who was who. Aslan was a great, strong character while the White Witch was a great villain. The twist, at the end, of when the children returned home and spoke with the Professor, I found led nicely to its sequel.
The themes of sibling bonding, friendship, trust, and courage were all nicely portrayed. I felt the four siblings’ relationships with one another was believable. When going on any adventure, courage needs to be present, and the children definitely had that.
While reading, I had forgotten the scene in which the White Witch and her minions treat Aslan so poorly. It’s good that the scene wasn’t too graphically described, but it was definitely a sad one. Not that I don’t think children couldn’t handle a scene like this, I would just be ready to have a conversation, if needed.
Lastly, when I first read this, I didn’t realize all the Biblical references. The terms, “Son of Adam” and “Daughter of Eve” were fairly obvious. However, Aslan representing Jesus Christ wasn’t so obvious unless you know the story. I did find the Biblical references interesting and cleverly woven in.
Overall, this was a fun read that transported me into a magical world, and gets me excited to re-read the rest of the series at some point.
I would highly recommend this classic to upper elementary children to adults who enjoy a quick, but exciting adventure to a land where an adventure awaits.
Was this a book of my choosing or one for review?
44 out of 50 books of my choosing for 2018!