Mini Review: The Magician’s Nephew and The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis
Author: C.S. Lewis
Series: The Chronicles of Narnia #6/#1*
Publisher: Collier Books, a division of Macmillan
Publication Date: August 1, 1970 (First published 1955)
The Magician’s Nephew is a gorgeous introduction to the magical land of Narnia. The many readers who discovered C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles through The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe will be delighted to find that the sixth volume in the series is actually the first in the sequence–and a step back in time. In this unforgettable story, British schoolchildren Polly and Digory inadvertently tumble into the Wood Between the Worlds, where they meet the evil Queen Jadis and, ultimately, the great, mysterious King Aslan. We witness the birth of Narnia and discover the legendary source of all the adventures that are to follow in the seven books that comprise the series. (Cover and synopsis from Goodreads.)
Author: C.S. Lewis
Series: The Chronicles of Narnia #7
Publisher: HarperTrophy, a division of HarperCollins Publishers
Publication Date: 1984 (First published 1956)
Narnia…where dwarfs are loyal and tough and strong–or are they?…where you must say goodbye…and where the adventure begins again.
The Unicorn says that humans are brought to Narnia when Narnia is stirred and upset. And Narnia is in trouble now: A false Aslan roams the land. Narnia’s only hope is that Eustace and Jill, old friends to Narnia, will be able to find the true Aslan and restore peace to the land. Their task is a difficult one because, as the Centaur says, “The stars never lie, but Men and Beasts do.” Who is the real Aslan and who is the imposter? (Cover and synopsis from Goodreads.)
I read both of these books fairly quickly, and didn’t write too many notes, so I’m just going to write a mini review of both of them and share some of my notes.
- Once again with the food! Why do you always have to make me so hungry, C.S. Lewis?!?
- The Magician’s Nephew really reminds me of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials series, with the dust and the characters moving between worlds. I know that Pullman hates this series, but I feel like he was influenced by this series even though he hates it so much. (I personally liked both series, and found great things about both, while also finding things I didn’t like so much in both.) Perhaps he used things in this series on purpose, though.
- I also think J.K. Rowling was influenced a lot by this series. I happened to look it up and while she had her issues with the series as well, she said that she did love them as a kid.
- I like how, in The Magician’s Nephew, people from Narnia and other worlds come into our own world. That’s pretty cool, since that doesn’t really happen in the other books (except for a second in The Silver Chair).
- I love when things from other books show up in series like this, when they’re kind of more companion books, but the characters or places show up again. In The Magician’s Nephew, we see The White Witch, the lamp post, and Digory, who was the older man whom the Pevensies stayed with in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.
- My favorite line from The Magician’s Nephew: “Now the trouble about trying to make yourself stupider than you really are is that you very often succeed.”
- I didn’t really love the story of the ape and the donkey in The Last Battle. I get why the story was told, but I just didn’t like it.
- I was confused about a few things in the end of The Last Battle…
- Yay! Reepicheep!!! He is definitely my favorite character of the whole series, and I was glad to see him again in The Last Battle.
- My favorite line from The Last Battle: “Talking Dogs, just like the common ones, behave as if they thought whatever they are doing at the moment immensely important.”
Find The Last Battle: Goodreads │ Amazon │ The Book Depository
My review of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
My review of Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis
My review of The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis
My review of The Silver Chair and The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis
*Most of my copies of The Chronicles of Narnia series are numbered in the published order, although some are numbered so that the story moves chronologically. I’ve decided to read them all in the order they were originally published.