Book Review: The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis

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Read between: 19th-25th January 2016
Number of pages: 171
Publisher: Grafton
Published: 2002 (originally 1955)
Popsugar Reading Challenge: A book and it’s sequel (currently reading The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe) OR  a book with a blue cover.
Synopsis: Digory let out a scream. “What’s happened to Polly?”
“Congratulate me, my dear boy,” said Uncle Andrew, rubbing his hands.
“My experiment has succeeded. The little girl’s gone – vanished – right out of this world.”

When Digory and Polly discover Uncle Andrew’s secret workshop, they are tricked into touching the magic rings which transport them to the Other Place. By even Uncle Andrew doesn’t realise the wonders that await them,for here is the gateway to the Land of Narnia and the beginning of many wonderful adventures there…

Rating: 
Review: I admit, I have never fully completed the Narnia series so when I pulled this book from my TBR jar, I couldn’t wait to re-read it. I remembered very little from when I first read it, but upon reading it, all the memories came flooding back.

The story follows Diggory Kirke (who I admit could be irritating sometimes), and his friend and neighbour Polly, who after interrupting his Uncle Andrew, find themselves objects of experimentation, transported to another world by two magical rings. From there, their adventures begin, and they discover the aptly named Wood between Worlds. A forest filled with pools- each, which lead to a different world.

The first is Charn, an old world, home of the evil Queen Jadis. In Charn, it was clear something bad was about to happen, but when Diggory was a little too curious, his actions caused quite disatrous consequences- including awakening Jadis from her sleep. However, this is isn’t that bad, as if Diggory had listened to Polly, she wouldn’t have woken up and they would never have ended up discovering Narnia. The magic of the rings transported Jadis too, and it was amusing to see her in somewhere as ordinary as London. Uncle Arthur fawning over her was a little unnecessary but needed, it gave the impression she was a beautiful and different as she was powerful.

However, I think my favourite part of the book had to be the creation of Narnia itself. Aslan’s song must be truly beautiful in order to enable a world to come to be, I cannot imagine it in my head, despite the fantastic description. It was beautiful to read and I could really picture the world as it grew and came alive, as if it was happening before my very eyes. The images helped, but the way all of the animals came out of the ground was very creative. It was enjoyable to read, even though I knew that there was the threat of Jadis who was lurking in the background. The London/Narnia mix was still in place, with the Cabbie and his horse being transported too, but thankfully, Aslan gave them both important parts to play in the beginnings of Narnia.  Strawberry became far more than the average horse and I think it was great for him, considering the way that Jadis treated him when she rampaged through old London town.

Finally, we are linked to the second book in the series, through some very clever writing which breaks the fourth wall- it works! The author is reflecting on the story we’ve just read to convey what happens in the future for Diggory.

The Magician’s Nephew may not be the first book that C.S. Lewis published, but it is the first of the series that should be read, not only is it a brilliant story, its important. It’s the book that starts it all.

I really enjoyed reliving my childhood, and I want to move on to my favourite next so I can try and read all of them this year.

4/5 stars.
A lovely story.

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