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The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Chronicles of Narnia, #1)
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PAST Group Reads 2018 > The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe (Narnia)- December- SPOILER THREAD

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message 1: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
This is our December 2018 group read. It is the first book (by publication date) in the Chronicle of Narnia series.

This is the SPOILER thread, where you can discuss all events, themes, and the ending of the book.

SPOILER ALERT - If you haven't read the book yet, don't read further (unless you don't mind reading spoilers). Go to the No-Spoiler thread:

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

Narnia Series discussion:


Cathy (cathy1015) | 54 comments I've read up until all four - Edmund, Lucy, Susan, and Peter - end up in Narnia. I just love the beginning - the build up and time with the professor. I remember wishing the book had been longer and that Lewis had included more scenes in the house with the wardrobe. I also enjoy the subtle humor like - don't close the door to the wardrobe, their biggest worry at this point in the story...and then they all tumble into Narnia.

(Another favorite part so far is the professor's let's keep an open mind attitude towards the wardrobe - great scene where they are all talking and working their way through the possibilities.)


message 3: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Cathy wrote: "I've read up until all four - Edmund, Lucy, Susan, and Peter - end up in Narnia. I just love the beginning - the build up and time with the professor. I remember wishing the book had been longer an..."

Yes, I liked the professor's answer too. Logic! It really came down to trusting the person who was known to be truthful and (obviously) not mad (even though what she was saying defied logic to them).

Chapter 10 has Father Christmas. I like the description of him, and the effect that he had on the children, because they knew he was real. This was exciting because the witch had put the land into a winter without christmas, so this a sign that her power was weakening. I would have liked more of this scene.

I was surprised that Father Christmas gave the kids weapons as gifts, but I guess that's what they would soon need. They were meant for battle for the boys, but self-defense or healing for the girls. He said, "..battles are ugly when women fight." I don't know if this was sexism (it used to be unthinkable to send women to battle), or a fear of sexual assault (which often happens during wartime anyway, not just during battles.)


message 4: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
One of my favorite parts of Lion/Witch/Wardrobe involved Aslan. He shows many characteristics of Jesus, with the way he speaks and looks (sad, solemn). He performs magic (miracles), he sacrifices himself (to save one of the children), and then finally there is the resurrection scene.

As the book was ending, it appeared that the children had long lives as kings and queens. I was starting to feel sad that they missed their childhoods, and the lives they left behind. So it was sweet to discover that they were able to go home and pick up right where they left off as children. Though surely they would have memories or at least dreams of their lives in Narnia?


message 5: by J., Your Obedient Servant (new) - rated it 4 stars

J. (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
Cathy wrote: "I've read up until all four - Edmund, Lucy, Susan, and Peter - end up in Narnia. I just love the beginning - the build up and time with the professor. I remember wishing the book had been longer an..."

One of my favorite things about these books is the way children are treated and spoken to. Most of the time, at least in Narnia, they are not talked down to for being young or having questions and are given agency and choice. Conversely, they are not sheltered from the consequences of their choices and actions.

As an adult, I can see why I wanted to keep reading as a 6-7 year old.


Paula NancyJ wrote: "One of my favorite parts of Lion/Witch/Wardrobe involved Aslan. He shows many characteristics of Jesus, with the way he speaks and looks (sad, solemn). He performs magic (miracles), he sacrifices h..."

C.S. Lewis seemed to make time "wibbly-wobbly" before Doctor Who did it. *wink*


Paula Something I noticed from the beginning is how the stories sound like someone is telling them as stories to a child or group of children in person. It's a clever and charming treatment which I think is rather subtle.


Chris | 55 comments I enjoyed the story overall. The surface story definitely written for children but the parallels to the crucifixion and resurrection are undeniable and I don't think a child would understand the Christian subtext. They would just enjoy the mythical creatures, talking animals and adventure that leads to the good versus evil battle.

I was taken that Lewis would make the young Lucy the catalyst for the story and give her a strong sense of right and wrong. In the 50's it was unusual for girls to be the heroines outside of the home of course.


Cathy (cathy1015) | 54 comments I enjoyed the re-read and my favorite parts remained pretty much the same. The timing was good since we just had a huge snow which is unusual for this early in the winter. I loved the animal imagery and Mr. and Mrs. Beaver in particular - Susan's compliments to their dam which they were obviously so proud of, their immediate willingness to find Edmund. The beavers had a bigger part than I remembered. Loved the illustrations too...there's a great one of Mr. and Mrs. Beaver putting on snowshoes.


Charley Girl (charleygirl9) | 24 comments @Paula I liked how the storyteller said he couldn't express certain events in the book or no one will know including the storyteller.

I also loved the children's bewilderment at the professor questions of why Lucy's comments about the wardrobe was being questioned! It was as if the professor was a child and could imagine all of the possibilities. :)


message 11: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Dec 14, 2018 03:58PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
I liked that storytelling technique too. Also that the adults did not act like adults, and the kids could take charge.

Chris, that's a great observation about Lucy. She was a girl, and the youngest, so it was doubly unusual to show her as a leader.

I finished the (paper) book last week, and I'm glad I got to see the illustrations. I didn't realize I still had the CD in the car yesterday, and when I turned on the car, I heard Aslan roaring. It was cool to hear how Aslan was voiced.


Chris | 55 comments To expand on the Christian theme. I read somewhere that C.S. Lewis thought these fairy tale images/mythical creatures could express key elements of the Christian faith, and that the Aslan character (Christ) and the White Witch (Satan) was more easily digested by children, but would be recognizable as they grew older.

I didn't initially think of Edmund as Adam who succumbs to temptation and cuts himself off from God's grace & is thus bound to Satan. But as I listened to critical analysis, I certainly could see it. Nor did I see the parallels of the breaking of the stone table to the tearing of the curtain enclosing the "holy of holies" (from the OT) therefore providing our direct access to God through Christ's sacrifice & resurrection.

When Aslan was able to turn the stone statues back to life by the power of his breath, was that a metaphor for a new life in Christ?

I got so much more out of this reading than just the lovely fairy tale of good vs. evil than I had before. And how appropriate for those of the Christian faith that we read it as we are preparing to celebrate the birth of Jesus.


Parker | 204 comments Chris, I think that's the beauty of this book. It can be read simply as a fantasy or as Christian allegory.

One of my former colleagues was quite surprised that I had read and liked the book since I'm not Christian.


Chris | 55 comments Parker wrote:One of my former colleagues was quite surprised that I had read and liked the book since I'm not Christian.

yes, its a lovely fairy tale with moral lessons, and I think anyone not versed in the NT would not necessarily see any Christian parallels per se. So its for everyone!


message 15: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Dec 25, 2018 08:36PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
I'm so glad we read it this month. I read two of the books so far and I have a third waiting for me.

I didn't catch the connection between Adam and Edmund, but when you point it out, it makes a lot of sense. I thought that the resurrection was represented by Aslan coming back to life. I was thinking that bringing all the people back to life was a healing miracle, but I can see it the other way too.


Chris | 55 comments Nancy J wrote: I thought that the resurrection was represented by Aslan coming back to life. I was thinking that bringing all the people back to life was a healing miracle, but I can see it the other way too.

Oh yes, I think Aslan coming back to life is the parallel to Christ's resurrection. I was thinking about the "breath of life" as perhaps the Holy Spirit who facilitates one's rebirth in Christ or a new life in (with) Christ. I can see healing miracles also, although Jesus's healing miracles were prior to his crucifixion.


Charley Girl (charleygirl9) | 24 comments Wow! I didn't see any of that in the book, but can see it now. Ahhh...I love goodreads!


message 18: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Charley Girl wrote: "Wow! I didn't see any of that in the book, but can see it now. Ahhh...I love goodreads!"

Me too. It's nice to see things from other perspectives. I learn some surprising things. I find that I also think more deeply about a book when I start to write about it.


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