The Chronicles of Narnia, Books 1-3

Wow I am WAY overdue for a post on here. Don’t worry, I’ve been feeling incredibly guilty about it on a daily basis but I promise I have valid excuses. None of which I shall share. For those of you who follow me on Twitter (@vita_literature), you may or may not remember a broad statement I made around the second week of March that involved my ambition to read the entire Chronicles of Narnia. Well I made it through books 1, 2, and even 3! Now I’m losing some steam…feel free to prod me along if you can.

When I was younger, I only read The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, and I had no concept of the fact that this was a series. When I later found out it was a series, I presumed that The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe was the first book. I also assumed that being a series, it would carry forward with the same main characters. Those of you who have read the series will know that these assumptions didn’t work out so well. On to the books…

The first book was pretty amusing, I have to say. The characters were whimsical and the concept of Narnia’s creation was nothing amazing, but not terrible. I *really* enjoyed watching the evil queen enter Narnia and seeing how she created her own (eventual) downfall. So I’d say if I had to rate the book, I’d give it 2.5-3 snitches for amusement.

Re-reading the second one was especially fun for me. I loved the characters she created, more so the secondary ones than the main protagonists. Mr. Tumnus, the beavers, and the Lion really came alive for me and populated Narnia perfectly. Definitely would rate this one 3 snitches and I remembered why I wanted to re-read it and tackle the whole series. Then came book 3…

I know The Horse and His Boy has been a favourite of a few Narnia readers, but I just couldn’t get into it. I really don’t know what it was. The horse was a so-so character, the boy was not a character I enjoyed at all, and their companions were just “meh” to me. The story line wasn’t so bad, but I think that the characters just played too much of a part on my appreciation for the book as a whole. So I would give the book 1 or maybe 2 snitches. When I find myself compelled to finish a book but not enjoying it, it’s not a good sign.

I half want to give the series another shot and aim to finish the last three books, but the other part of me just isn’t interested. I’m not sure if I can entirely blame the series for this–it seems I’m being unusually picky this month. For some reason, my expectations are just a lot higher than usual and even if a book is relatively good, I’m just not satisfied enough. Weird. Maybe it’s because I just want to re-read The Hunger Games or Harry Potter again. I know I’m going to judge myself if I do (and you probably will too), and so instead I’m hoping something will come along that’s even better. So far, nothing’s doing it for me. If you have any suggestions or any words of encouragement / valid reasons why I should finish the Narnia series, share them below 🙂

The Chronicles of Narnia     (and a half)

Recommendation Rate            (I just think everyone should at least try to read classics like these. At least I tried!)

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2 thoughts on “The Chronicles of Narnia, Books 1-3

  1. The further along the Narnia series goes, the more melancholy in a high-fantasy way they get. The older Narnia gets in the books, the more you begin to see entropy working on the characters and in their relationships with each other. You can definitely tell that CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien were buddies/part of the same lit club, because there’s a fair bit of similarity of feeling between The Silver Chair and The Last Battle and The Return of the King.

    When I was a kid, The Horse and His Boy always stood out to me as being the different one; I didn’t particularly like Shasta but I looooooooved books about animals, especially horses. I must have read most of the Black Stallion’s numerous sequels at that point in my life.

    I recommend Prince Caspian and Voyage of the Dawn Treader – there are continuous character plotlines between the two and some of the most fun shenanigans in the whole series. Voyage of the Dawn Treader has my personal favourite opening line of a book ever – the whole book is full of snide little asides by Lewis, which is why I enjoy reading it now even though I’m older.

    • You definitely laid out some great points there. I’m convinced to continue on with the series at some point, I just may not do it immediately. I need to take a break and then start fresh again. Thanks for giving me the boost though!

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