Review: “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” by C.S. Lewis

For the love of books

Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy are four siblings sent to a refuge away from the London air raids during World War II.  However, the refuge is a mansion owned by an old Professor, and within that mansion there is a mysterious, old wardrobe.  During a game of hide-and-seek, Lucy hides inside the wardrobe and magically enters the world of Narnia for the first time.  The adventures that follow her discovery become legendary in Narnian history and compose one of the most profound novels in The Chronicles of Narnia.

C.S. Lewis established his narrative with wisdom and the Platonic belief that the just person would pursue the path of virtue for virtue’s sake, resulting in true happiness.  The author’s imagination and creativity develop the setting of Narnia to further heights of splendor while challenging the reader to ponder the storyline’s true meaning.

The stories and characters in the New Testament can be recognized from the allegories presented in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, which is chronologically the second volume in the series.  Aslan literally follows in Jesus Christ’s footsteps to the very moment of execution and resurrection.  The White Witch, a.k.a. Queen Jadis, makes a chilling, cruel female counterpart of Satan, while the character of Edmund is an alternate, more compassionate version of the traitor Judas Iscariot.  An excerpt from the novel displays Lewis’ intelligence when the Professor logically reasons with Peter and Susan about Lucy’s veracity:

…’There are only three possibilities.  Either your sister [Lucy] is telling lies, or she is mad, or she is telling the truth.  You know she doesn’t tell lies and it is obvious that she is not mad.  For the moment then and unless any further evidence turns up, we must assume that she is telling the truth.’…

~ excerpt from Chapter 5: Back on This Side of the Door in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

Original review: Part 2: ‘The Chronicles of Narnia’ by C.S. Lewis, Examiner.com

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