REVIEW The Magician’s Nephew 107

C.S. Lewis æ 7 REVIEW

REVIEW The Magician’s Nephew 107 ï The secret passage to the house next door leads to a fascinating adventureNARNIAwhere the woods are thick and cold where Talking Beasts are called to lifea new world where the adventure beginsDigory and Polly meet and become friends one cold wet summer in London Their lives burst into adventure when Digory's Uncle AndreGician sends them hurtling tosomewhere else They find their way to Narnia newborn from the Lion's song and encounter the evil sorceress Jadis before they finally return hom. “Awake Love Think Speak Be walking trees Be talking beasts Be divine waters” If I could have doubts about my idea that reading this series in publication order was the way to go this volume number six in publication order number one in chronological order would have made the decision final In this little book C S Lewis talks about the origins of Narnia how it was made and how it happened that humans got to visit it It felt so sweet and rewarding to read the whole series wondering about this mystery getting to know and love all the characters and then reading this one and finally had the mystery unveiled Anyone who would read this series in chronological order would spoil the best part of it In fact this is by far my absolute favourite book in the series This book made me laugh smile and moved me to tears Aslan in this one is just amazing his words by the pen of C S Lewis are pure poetry; and the characters are much likable than our four siblings I really cannot find any flaw in this volume If I was ever to unhaul this series which I don't think will ever happen and I was to keep only one book it would be this one I don't think these books are the best I ever read in fact it is not a secret that some Narnia books were not exactly of my liking but this one in particular will definitely be one of my favourite books of 2020 Beautiful

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The secret passage to the house next door leads to a fascinating adventureNARNIAwhere the woods are thick and cold where Talking Beasts are called to lifea new world where. Suffers from the same problems as Lewis' other books both his children's fantasy and his pokes at theology Lewis' worldview is not sophisticated and his sense of psychology has a large blind spot However it's not his faith that is the problem it certainly wasn't a problem for Donne or MiltonLewis is simply unable to put himself in another's shoes which is very problematic for a writer or a theologian He cannot understand the reasons or motivations for why someone would do something he considers 'evil' Unlike Milton he cannot create a tempting devil a sympathetic devil and so Lewis' devils are not dangerous because no one would ever fall for themHis villains are like Snidely Whiplash they are comically evil evil not due to some internal motivation but because the narrative reuires it Yet Lewis is not reveling in the comedic promise of overblown evil he's trying to be instructive So he dooms his own instruction it is only capable of warning us about dangers which are so ridiculous that they never could have tempted us in the first placeLikewise his heroes are comically heroic they are not people who struggle to be good who have motivations and an internal life they are just habitually inexplicably good There is nothing respectable in their characters nothing in their philosophies for us to aspire to they are just suffused with an indistinct 'goodness' which like evil is taken for grantedBut then Lewis' world is mostly a faultless one People never act or decide they are lead along by empty symbols of pure good or pure evil following one or the other because they are naive As usual Lewis' view of humanity is predictably dire always too naive too foolish to know what good and evil are even when they are right in front of us and yet we are apparently still to be reviled and cursed when they make the wrong decision even if we couldn't have known what we were aboutLike many of Lewis' works this could have made a profound satire but it's all too precariously serious for Lewis to be mocking There is something unusual in the fact that whenever the amassed evidence of his plot characters and arguments point to a world of confusion in which man is utterly lost Lewis always arrives at the conclusion that we are fundamentally culpable despite the fact that he always depicts us as acting without recognitionThe really frightening thing about Lewis' worldview is that we can never seem to know whether we are naively following good or naively following evil but that the difference between the two is vital and eternal Like Calvin he dooms us to one or another fate and we shall never know which yet unlike Calvin Lewis never really accepts the ultimate conclusion this worldview suggestsThere seems to be at the heart of Lewis' works a desperate pride a desperate sense that we do know even when we think we don't even when Lewis shows us a hundred examples where we couldn't possibly know But that is the crux of the fundamental paradox around which Lewis inevitably frames his stories the paradox which defines his life his philosophies and the impetus for his conversionLike most of us Lewis seems to feel a deep need know what is right to be right Yet his experiences have shown him again and again that we are fundamentally ignorant despite our most devoted attempts to be knowledgeable It's an impassable contradictionLewis saw a world filled with pain ignorance selfishness cruelty senseless violence and refused to accept that this was part of human nature; so he made it an outside thing a thing which was for him always clearly defined He spent most of his writing career trying to show how the effect of this thing could be the excuse for why man commits such terrible acts but without making man himself evil but many men are desperate to avoid the idea that their own mistakes their own forays into 'evil' are ultimately their own faultHe is never able to define the point at which mere naivete becomes guilt The two opposing forces of ignorant evil and willful evil are always nebulous for Lewis and he never succeeds in defining where one ends and the other begins where foolishness becomes damnationHe never defines it philosophically theologically or psychologically Usually he just draws a line arbitrarily between 'good people' people like him and 'bad people' everyone else Like Tolkien he takes the comfortable and familiar and fences it off a little peaceful island home safe against an incomprehensible world It's a comforting worldview one many of us feel drawn to that sense of isolation 'us against the world' the need to be right at all costs to be different from those we habitually condemn to know what is good and what is not but it is not a coherent philosophy it is not conducive to self awareness and it's certainly not the sort of thing we need to be feeding our children Indeed the only thing such self justification invites is further ignorance prejudice and conflictMy List of Suggested Fantasy Books

SUMMARY The Magician’s Nephew

The Magician’s NephewThe adventure beginsDigory and Polly meet and become friends one cold wet summer in London Their lives burst into adventure when Digory's Uncle Andrew who thinks he is a ma. This is one of those books that make you feel good on a bad day It just puts a smile on your face whether you read it for the first time as an adult or you relive some of the moments of you childhood through it And no I am not that old even if here I sound like I am ancient hahaha