I’ve recently discovered the Chronicles of Narnia audio books, and they are changing my life for the better.
I accidentally checked out Volume 2 of the collection (meaning the second half of the series) instead of the whole thing, and I was a little sad about that at first.
I am that girl that reads books in order, no exceptions, thank you and goodbye.
However, I am also that girl that refuses to make a second trip for the same errand. No excuses.
(I’m a bit hard on myself. We know.)
So, I sucked up my disdainful sighs and put the first CD of “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” into my car stereo. My daily commute just improved tenfold.
The Chronicles of Narnia are DELIGHTFUL stories. Light yet thought provoking, humorous yet solemn, mysterious yet cheerful. CS Lewis writes like a grandfather telling stories out loud to his eager youngsters, and this style comes across beautifully in audiobook form.
And can I just say that even though “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” is a lovely and creative story… I’m a little tired of it.
Whether I’ve seen the movie too much or started reading that “first in the series” novel one too many times, I have had just about enough of Mr. Tumnus and annoying Edmund. Sue me.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that the other Narnia books are just as creative, engaging, and UNIQUE in storyline as the first! No wonder CS Lewis is such a hit!
Here are some things I have grown to deeply love about the Chronicles of Narnia:
- The earnest characters. Lucy in particular just steals my heart. She is Anne of Green Gables minus all of her awkward mishaps and fiery outbursts. She has a heart of pure gold, and influences other characters for good as well. These children are genuinely good people. The citizens of Narnia are kind-hearted and loyal. It’s such a relief to step inside a world like that for a while.
- The creativity of the Narnian world. Words like Puddleglum, Caspian, and Reepicheep tumble through my mind and ring uniquely there. I get so engrossed with picturing the beautiful landscapes CS Lewis describes, the delicious food that is prepared, and the glorious buildings/ships/castles that exist. This world is all-encompassing, engaging, and multidimensional.
- The honorable moral code. After a chapter or two of getting used to it, you grow to wish that everyone in our world were as honorable as the shining knights and kings of Narnia. CS Lewis takes medieval chivalry to its grandest point, and spins it with pure positivity. “On my honor,” I do wish people acted more like this in our world.
- The presence of spirituality. This one is hard to describe. All I can really say is that I see the nature of God in the Narnian world, personified by Aslan. This is nothing new. Yet, I am learning spiritual lessons from the way the characters interact with the great lion– and from witnessing his very-real emotions. Divinity in Narnia is incredibly real– leading us to believe that its presence is just as real in our world if only we could grow to notice it. These are some of the deepest concepts addressed ever-so-subtly in the Chronicles of Narnia. I am grateful for their teachings.
I may have struggled to read these books, but I am so excited to have stumbled upon their audio form. In true Narnian fashion, the serendipity of this discovery has forever changed my opinion of these stories and this incredible writer.
If you’re looking for light and engaging summer reading that leaves you wanting to be a better human, look no further than the Chronicles of Narnia.
“I am [in your world].’ said Aslan. ‘But there I have another name. You must learn to know me by that name. This was the very reason why you were brought to Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there.” ― C.S. Lewis