A Book of Narnians: The Lion, the Witch, and the Others is a fabulous book for a quick overview of the creatures of Narnia. It's not meant to be read as a novel; instead, it is a reference guide featuring original quotes (paragraphs at a time) about the featured Narnians from the original books. Personally, I prefer to skim A Book of Narnians instead of just reading through it.
Having read through the entire Chronicles of Narnia only once and going through a second time oh-so-slowly, there are plenty of creatures that I do not remember, and others that I do. This is a terrific point of reference for our family as my husband and I are both Narnia fans. (He actually gave me the big Narnia volume when we were engaged...and read it when I was finished.) Slowly, we will expose our children to Narnia, too! A Book of Narnians is great for any Narnia fan. The illustrations by Pauline Baynes are well over 50 years old and bring Narnia and the Narnians to life.
Though I do like the bulk of the book dedicated to the illustrations and descriptions from the original books, I really appreciate the Cast of Characters quick reference at the back of the book. C.S. Lewis's Narnia timeline is also included, as well as a map of Narnia and surrounding countries. The Narnian timeline parallels English years from 1888 (when Digory Kirke is born) to 1949 when there is a serious accident on British Railways.
A Book of Narnians, along with a picture book from Chick-Fil-A called Aslan were some of my favorite finds at a used book sale this summer! They came in perfect time for the Chronicles of Narnia Reading Challenge at Reading to Know with Carrie. As part of the challenge, we also listened to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe on audio CD. My daughter was interested, but the witch really scared her. At one point she requested that we turn off the book. We did, though Aslan's triumph had just taken place. (Oh, the suspense!) We talked about the book. Within a few hours, M requested that we listen again, and we finished the book! She did enjoy it, as did her parents!
Carrie has been having a blast exploring Narnia with her boys and enjoying it for herself, too, all through the month of July. If you are a Narnia fan, be sure to go visit this month!
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