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The Horse and His Boy

(The Chronicles of Narnia (Publication Order) #5)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  246,697 ratings  ·  6,405 reviews
The Horse and his Boy is a stirring and dramatic fantasy story that finds a young boy named Shasta on the run from his homeland with the talking horse, Bree. When the pair discover a deadly plot by the Calormen people to conquer the land of Narnia, the race is on to warn the inhabitants of the impending danger and to rescue them all from certain death.
Paperback, 224 pages
Published 1995 by Scholastic Inc (first published September 6th 1954)
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Sarah Renee Jones Absolutely, yes. If you read the series in chronological order you will see that it mirrors the Bible from cover to cover. With the first book, The…moreAbsolutely, yes. If you read the series in chronological order you will see that it mirrors the Bible from cover to cover. With the first book, The Magician's Nephew telling how Narnia was created (including a forbidden fruit, in a special garden) all the way to the last book, The Last Battle, which reflects Revelation in the Bible! :) (less)
Liam They were, like, best friends, so maybe they decided to both use it. I've heard that Tolkien based Treebeard off of C.S. Lewis, and Lewis based the…moreThey were, like, best friends, so maybe they decided to both use it. I've heard that Tolkien based Treebeard off of C.S. Lewis, and Lewis based the professor from Voyage of the Dawn Treader off of Tolkien, or something like that.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.92  · 
Rating details
 ·  246,697 ratings  ·  6,405 reviews


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Robert Clay
Jul 31, 2007 rated it it was amazing
This is probably my favorite of the Chronicles. It takes place during the Golden Age of Narnia, with the Pevensies reigning in their prime, although the story is actually set in the countries to the south of Narnia, which provides for a rather different feel to much of this novel. I always find the visual imagery captivating: riding across the moors at night, entering the towering city of Tashban, spending a night among the tombs of the ancient kings.
P
May 20, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, young-adult
“Do not by any means destroy yourself, for if you live you may yet have good fortune, but all the dead are dead like.”




This felt as if I was reading a folktale about a horse and a boy who wander around and seek their new adventure. Yet the humor in this book is abundant, even though the narration is not as intriguing as the other books. And the storyline is quite straight and lacks of twists or epicness, too. I yawned so many times while I was getting past the first half of the book. I'd used
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Alison
Dec 22, 2008 rated it it was ok
I feel more conflicted about this book than any of the other Narnia books. On the plus side, the story is stronger and CS Lewis manages to keep his blatant editorializing to a minimum (maybe because none of the characters are transplants from wartime London).

But holy crap, the modern reader will find his racist descriptions pretty hard to swallow. He reintroduces his devious, smelly, turban-clad race, the Calormen. A lost white boy is raised among them and he is sad until he is finally reunited
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Ahmad Sharabiani
The Horse and his Boy (Chronicles of Narnia, #5), C.S. Lewis
The Horse and His Boy is a novel for children by C. S. Lewis, published by Geoffrey Bles in 1954. Of the seven novels that comprise The Chronicles of Narnia, The novel is set in the period covered by the last chapter of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe during the reign of the four Pevensie children as Kings and Queens of Narnia. Though three of the Pevensies appear as minor characters in The Horse and His Boy, the main characters
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Deborah Markus
Dec 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
I feel really guilty about loving this book as much as I do. I loved it as a kid and I love it now, and there is just so much wrong with it.

The xenophobia is positively racist -- by page 5, we're already hearing the first of many references to the fact that the residents of Narnia are considered by the residents of their southern neighbor, Calormen, to be "fair and white...accursed but beautiful barbarians."

The Calormenes, on the other hand, are nothing but walking Middle Eastern stereotypes. Th
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Dannii Elle
This is my third journey into the lands of Narnia as I have been reading the series in chronological rather than publication order. With probably the most intriguing title of the series, this was the tale I was most excited for, but it ultimately didn't live up the magic of the previous two books, for me.

This is the first book in the series not set from the perspective of someone entering Narnia from the human real. I still enjoyed it, though it is not what I thought it would be and, as such, i
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Barry Pierce
Ugh, this is the worst episode of Mister Ed ever.
Roya
Feb 04, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: okay
You know you're bored when it nearly takes you a month to read something of this length.
Rebecca
Mar 01, 2008 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: no one
The basic story is a good and entertaining one, but I could not get beyond the overt prejudices of C.S. Lewis on display throughout this book.

I'm incredibly disappointed. His portrayal of the people of Calormen is horrid. I admit, by calor I don't known if he is implying people of the hot lands (as calor indicates heat) or if it is a not-so-subtle way of suggesting colored people, but the descriptions speak for themselves. These people are described as dark-skinned, turban-wearing, c
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Nenia ☠️ Hecka Wicked ☠️ Campbell

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To cure a book slump, I decided to revisit the Chronicles of Narnia series. I grew up with the books as a kid, but I'd never actually finished the series to completion. Conveniently, I happen to own a stack of them that I purchased from a thrift shop a few years ago on a whim. To make things extra interesting, I'm reading the books in chronological order instead of publication order, which means that some of the lesser-known books like THE MAGICIAN'S NEPHEW & THE HORSE AND HI
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Adrian
The boxed set of Narnia that I have and am now reading, was published in 2002 I have noticed, so despite having 1950/60s covers, these were NOT my original Narnia books from the early 70s. I wonder where my originals went and when I bought these ??
Who knows, what I do know is that it’s strange, I could not remember a single thing about this book, I don’t think I have ever read it.
That said it was very enjoyable, a fun romp through the countries bordering Narnia with an interesting mix of
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Jay
Apr 08, 2013 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No one.
One word: Orientalist.

Sorry, I could not get past it - nor should I have to. This was a terrible book, full of so much imperialist racist anti-Arab/Indian tones that I could not appreciate any aspect of it. Quite frankly I couldn't believe that I was reading this garbage. I don't really care if the story is good - if it's offensive it's not good. And even then, I really didn't care for the story.

The characters were completely new and it takes place during Susan/Edmund/Pet
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K.D. Absolutely
May 19, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommended to K.D. by: Filipinos Group
Shelves: childrens, series
The story is so simple but it took me awhile to appreciate what's going on because I am reading the series not in its proper sequence. I read Book #2, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe last year and now this Book #3, The Horse and His Boy without reading Book #1 The Magician's Nephew first. Reason? I misplaced my copy of Book #1 and I had to search for it.

Well, it is quite hard to rate this book. It is a simple fantasy story. The horse in the title is Bree, the talking Narnian horse. He and the boy in the tit
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David Mosley
Oct 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is increasingly becoming one of my favourites from the Chronicles of Narnia. If asked why, I believe it is because it is the most like a medieval faerie romance. A young boy and girl in the mundane world of Calormen suddenly find themselves in the presence of faeries––talking horses––who wish to take them into Faerie itself––Narnia. Faerie, and the journey to it, however, is perilous and fraught with dangers. Once in it, or on its borders (i.e. Archenland) it becomes even more dangerous. A ...more
Piyangie
The Horse and His Boy is a good adventure story in the Chronicles. Here the adventure begins in Calormen, a coastal country south to Narnia. Two children, Shasta, a young boy who believes him to be kidnapped from Narnia and Aravis, a noble Calormene girl both make their escape from the Calormen - the boy to avoid being sold as a slave and the girl to avoid being forced to marry an old man. The story is mostly about their adventures as they make their escape and safe passage to Narnian territory. ...more
Els
Feb 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Have I mentioned how much I love these books recently?

And Aravis is just like me. In all the wrong ways.
Nic
Jun 11, 2008 rated it really liked it
(As with all the Narnia books, I read this years ago, but am rereading it now.)

I have to say, having now reread all of the Narnia books except for The Last Battle, that this is my favorite. It's coherent, exciting, and has likeable characters. I even found Aslan much more likeable in this one; I think it's because he does less scolding and more helping, and he's better integrated into the plot than in, say, Prince Caspian.

I've also decided that I kind of like Lewis' weird semi-omniscient t
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Elaina
Nov 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this one so much! I loved Shasta, Bree, Aravis....everyone!! It was different than the others, but I still liked it a lot! I have no idea which is my favorite Chronicles of Narnia book now haha I just started reading the Magician's Nephew a couple days ago and I'm loving it so far! I've been reading so many books lately and it's hard to keep track of all of them...I should have written a review sooner, but I've been a little busy with school when I haven't been reading ;) lol So sorry ...more
Bradley
Mar 25, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy, 2019-shelf
Aaaaaannnd it's time to downgrade an old classic.

Reading it with my girl was kinda a chore because BOTH of us thought the story dragged. And if a six-year-old can pick out the ickiness of caricature Arab cultures and find it distasteful (without any kind of reaction from her daddy), then it MIGHT be a bit bad.

Sure, sure, talking horses and missing princesses and princes and an adventure/quest OUGHT to be great fun, but the pacing is weird with lots of talking about events
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Jack Smith
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Don't shoot me but probably my favorite Narnia. Love Corin. 👌
David Sarkies
Oct 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Coming Home
26 October 2017

So, it looks like it has come down to me writing a book review during my lunch break. Well, it wouldn't be the first time, and certainly won't be the last (even though I really only have 20 minutes in which to do it). So, as I usually do, I've popped over the road to the State Library of Victoria so that I can plug in my laptop and borrow their electricity (well, they do let us use it). Ironically, the table that I have sat down at happens to have another la
...more
MissBecka
Meh. This one was not as exciting or fun as the previous two.
Lightreads
Aug 26, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
That's it, I give. C.S. Lewis, you have beaten me, I am done. I have been trying to review this for two months, but every time I open a document, my brain just screams "bacon!"* and runs away.

This whole childhood nostalgia reread project is supposed to be fun! It's supposed to be me bringing the lens of adult readership to the books that shaped the way I think about fantasy and narrative. It's supposed to be self-reflective and, not like this is a surprise, I'm supposed to enjoy redi
...more
Mario
Mar 05, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: own, own-read
Not my favorite in the series, but it was still really fun read.
Hayley
Jul 25, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya, fanciful
The Horse and His Boy was one of my favorite chronicles of Narnia when I was younger — partly because I love all things oriental, and the setting of Calormen is Lewis’s quasi-Arabian society — but more importantly, because of the heroine Aravis. The young Calormene aristocrat, a ‘tarkheena’ as she is titled, is a singular character in the Lewis mythology: here, for once, the author shows us that he is capable of envisioning a female who is neither a mild-mannered English girl, nor an evil sorcer ...more
Joe
Nov 04, 2013 rated it did not like it
Calormen is the land of scimitars, turbans, viziers and bazaars. Lewis makes clear from these details of tool and title that Calormen is his fantasy stand-in for the middle east. And he makes equally clear what he thinks of that region by how he describes the people that live there. For Calormen is also the land of dark-skinned men in dirty robes, abused children, mass slavery, petty haggling and a capital city that looks grand on the outside but is revealed to be a festering hole. Calormen is t ...more
Ziba
Dec 12, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Horse and His Boy is the only book of the Narnia series that features native rather than English children as the main characters, and the only one set entirely in the Narnian world. It is set in the period covered by the last chapter of the inaugural book, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, during the reign of the four Pevensie children as Kings and Queens of Narnia. Though the Pevensies appear as minor characters, the main characters are two children and two talking horses who escape fr ...more
Miranda Reads
Nov 07, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: audiobook
Okay - am I the only one who noticed that the Calormen is pronounced color-men in the audiobook? And that they are all dark-skinned? I think Lewis has something to answer for...

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Erin
Nov 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: series
The third book in the Chronicles of Narnia, " The Horse and his Boy is the somewhat familiar storyline of an orphan who sets out on an adventure with the help of a few friends and discovers "who they really are."
Susan, Peter, Edmund, Lucy and Aslan all make an appearance, but this is ultimately the story of Shasta, his talking horse, Bree, and the folks they meet along the way.

I never felt completely immersed in the tale and that probably stems from the predictable nature of the story.
Katie Ziegler (Life Between Words)
This might be my favorite book in the CoN. I love it so very, very much. It's just dang good storytelling.
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Fantasy Buddy Reads: The Horse and His Boy [Nov 2, 2018] 5 12 Nov 15, 2018 06:26AM  
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Clive Staples Lewis 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
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Other books in the series

The Chronicles of Narnia (Publication Order) (7 books)
  • The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Chronicles of Narnia, #1)
  • Prince Caspian (Chronicles of Narnia, #2)
  • The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (Chronicles of Narnia, #3)
  • The Silver Chair (Chronicles of Narnia, #4)
  • The Magician's Nephew (Chronicles of Narnia, #6)
  • The Last Battle (Chronicles of Narnia, #7)
“Do not dare not to dare.” 513 likes
“Child,' said the Lion, 'I am telling you your story, not hers. No one is told any story but their own.” 351 likes
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