A good movie is wonderful. A good book is amazing. But it is rare that I find a movie adaption that actually lives up to the book on which it is supposed to be based (trust me, with some films you can't even tell there is a connection between the two). This happens to be an amazing book AND it has an amazing adaption to go with it. Quite the deal, I'd say, eh?
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
By C.S. Lewis
*Summary taken from the back of the book
NARNIA . . . the land beyond the wardrobe, the secret country known only to Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy . . . the place where the adventure begins.
Lucy is the first to find the secret of the wardrobe in the professor's mysterious old house. At first, no one believes her when she tells of her adventures in the land of Narnia. But soon Edmund and then Peter and Susan discover the Magic and meet Aslan, the Great Lion, for themselves. In the blink of an eye, their lives are changed forever.
My Thoughts: There has been much inward debate over this, but I am finally convinced that the second Narnian book is my favorite book out of the entire series. I really love The Horse and His Boy and The Magician's Nephew (not to mention The Voyage of the Dawn Treader), but you can't beat the original. The wardrobe, Mr. Tumnus, the Professor, the Beavers, and of course, ASLAN -- they're all in it. Along with tea, sardines, and some magic Turkish Delight*. And nothing can replace such classic moments like Lucy's tea with Mr. Tumnus, supper with the Beavers, Narnia going from winter to spring in the course of a few hours, and Aslan breathing the stone statues back to life. The only thing that baffles me is how the Pevensies could be Kings and Queens of Narnia all those years and yet never once think, "Hmm, I wonder if the Professor is worried about where we are...?" Of course, when they arrived home they realized that no time had passed, but still...
Pros: It's one of the most wonderful tales I've ever read. I opened it for the first time when I was only seven or eight years old and was immediately enchanted. Like the other books in this series, it is a wonderful allegory of Christianity. Every time I read one of the Narnia books I notice more similarities between it and truths/parables I know from Bible. There is absolutely no inappropriate content of any size, shape, or form. All in all, an excellent read.
Cons: Some violence and cruelty, all from the White Witch, but really nothing that bad.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
I recommend this book for ages 9+
A Bit O' Reading For the Day
"And now a very curious thing happened. None of the children knew who Aslan was any more than you do; but the moment the Beaver had spoken [his name] everyone felt quite different.... At the name of Aslan each one of the children felt something jump in its inside. Edmund felt a sensation of mysterious horror. Peter felt suddenly brave and adventurous. Susan felt as if some delicious smell or some delightful strain of music had just floated by her. And Lucy got the feeling you have when you wake up in the morning and realize that it is the beginning of the holidays or the beginning of summer." ~The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, chapter 8
*Side note: Right after the movie came out, my sisters and I were obsessed with Narnia and always playing it together. Bree was Peter, I was Susan, Emilia was Edmund, and Lydia was Lucy. Well, as Christmas drew closer, Bree and I had the excellent idea to give Emilia a very Edmund-ish gift. Yep, you guessed it -- we gave her a box of Turkish Delight. And ever since then, I've had a lot more compassion for Edmund. Real Turkish Delight (not just that kind you can buy at the grocery store that looks like dried fruit) is UH-mazing. :))