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The Last Battle (Narnia) by C. S. Lewis
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Title:The Last Battle (Narnia)
Authors:C. S. Lewis
Other authors:Pauline Baynes (Illustrator)
Info:HarperTrophy (1994), Paperback, 224 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Last Battle by C. S. Lewis (1956)

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English (121)  Dutch (2)  Polish (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (126)
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My daughter and I have finished the Chronicles of Narnia with this book, and to be honest, I am somewhat disappointed. This book is very good, but I was hoping that it would end with a bang, and in one sense, it did, but in another, it didn't.

The let down for me in this book, was a couple things. First, the last battle between Tirian and his loyal subjects, and everyone else. It's a three-way battle which is certainly interesting, but as soon as it starts, it ends, and about 2/3 of the way through the book. Next thing you know, Aslan shows up, calls out Father Time, calls down the stars (who are really people), and destroys the world, while everyone is looking on through a door.

Now they're in a "new Narnia" which is really just "Narnia inside of Narnia" (uh, okay?). Now they can run very fast without tiring and they can swim up a waterfall. They run up to a garden, which is the same garden from the Magician's Nephew, but it's really a "newer Narnia", so now it's Narnia inside of Narnia inside of Narnia. While there, they see England, but it's really "England inside of England" that they see.

I'm sorry, but when it got to this mind-bending voodoo hyper-meta-subreality, I lost it. Up to that point, I would have given the book 5 stars with Shift dressing Puzzle up as a fake Aslan, and parading him around. I thought that was a good conflict to build a story off, and would have liked to see more of Tash. Possibly a battle between Tash and Aslan, as they're supposed to be opposites. And maybe Lewis was heading that direction initially, but when we wrote in this "Narnia inside of Narnia" garbage, it really went down hill quickly. I mean, it's so jarring, that I would put money on it that Lewis was writing for an Aslan vs. Tash battle, but changed his mind last minute.

Shift is shoved through the doorway, and Tash pokes him with his beak, then Shift disappears. More is written about the dwarfs than Shift and Tash, and they play such a minor role in the book. Tash is never heard of again, and there is no explanation as to why Ginger lost the ability to be a Talking Cat. As soon as you get to the stable door battle, that is where things start falling apart, IMO.

But, the whole story isn't bad. It's still very good. The thing that really saves the Narnia inside of Narnia garbage, is knowing that Digory, Polly, Peter, Edmund, and Lucy die on a train in England. They were pulled into Narnia before they died. So, because they died in England-inside-of-England, they can never return home, and must live their lives out in Narnia-inside-of-Narnia-inside-of-Narnia. The End.

So, that twist was good, and I didn't see it coming. So, that sort of saved the last 1/4 of the book. Lewis did well everywhere else: creating a good conflict, not rushing to bring Eustace and Jill back into Narnia, character development, and pacing. It was just the last 1/4 of the book that wasn't very good, and as such, keeps it from getting a full 5 star rating. ( )
  atoponce | Oct 7, 2016 |
English Literature
  CPI | Jul 29, 2016 |
  StPaulsChurch | Jul 19, 2016 |
2004, Harper Collins Publishers, Read by Patrick Stewart

Narnia has long enjoyed peace and prosperity under the reign of King Caspian X, but trouble is brewing. In the North, an greedy ape named Shift convinces a simple minded donkey, Puzzle, to dress himself in a lion’s hide and pretend to be Aslan. By manipulating Puzzle, Shift – in league with the Calormene warlord Rishda Tarkaan – manages to persuade the Narnians that he speaks for Aslan – and convinces them to serve the Calormenes and to cut down the talking trees of Narnia. The proceeds of the work will go to “Aslan’s” treasury, for the benefit of all.

When Tirian and his magnificent unicorn, Jewel, learn of the deceit, Tirian accuses Shift and, in doing so, is captured. He calls on Aslan for help, and Jill and Eustace also return to Narnia. The group must engage Shift and the Calormenes. But many Narnians are slaughtered. The kings and queens bear witness to the end of the Narnian world. All the inhabitants, including those who have died, gather outside the barn to be judged by Aslan; the faithful enter Aslan's Country while those who have opposed or deserted him become ordinary animals and vanish. (Wikipedia)

Admittedly, I did not find this last installment terribly interesting, and the Christian overtones are a bit heavy-handed here. That said, Patrick Stewart, who narrates The Last Battle is sublime! And as a whole, the the Narnia Chronicles are easily recommended.

( )
1 vote lit_chick | Jun 23, 2016 |
A strong end to a great journey! Narnia will be missed, but always treasured and I can't wait to visit again! ( )
  Shadow494 | Jun 20, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 121 (next | show all)
The Christian symbolism is clear enough, but the book can stand on its own feet as a deeply moving and hauntingly lovely story apart from the doctrinal content.

» Add other authors (38 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
C. S. Lewisprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baynes, PaulineCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Baynes, PaulineIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dillon, DianeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dillon, LeoCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Eich, HansÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Georg, ThomasIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hane, RogerCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Helakisa, KaarinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lavis, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nielsen, CliffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pauline BaynesCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stewart, PatrickNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Van Allsburg, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In the last days of Narnia, far up to the west beyond Lantern Waste and close beside the great waterfall, there lived an Ape.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Unabridged. Please do NOT combine with any abridged editions.
Please do NOT combine "The Last Battle" with "The Chronicles of Narnia"
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Das Finale der Chroniken von Narnia! Böse Zeiten brechen über das Land des Löwen herein. Der Affe Listig verkleidet den Esel Wirrkopf mit einem Löwenfell und gibt ihn als Aslan, den mächtigen Schöpfer Narnias, aus. Die Bewohner des Landes werden versklavt und nach Kalormen verkauft. Aslan bringt Eustachius und Jill auf seine eigene Art und Weise nach Narnia, um dem Betrug ein Ende zu bereiten. Als die Kalormen aber ihren Gott Tash ins Spiel bringen, beginnt der eigentliche Kampf. Wie wird er enden? Wird Narnia weiterleben oder untergehen? Werden die Kalormen die Oberhand gewinnen und Narnia vernichten?
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0064409414, Paperback)

The last battle is the greatest of all battles

Narnia ... where lies breed fear ... where loyalty is tested ... where all hope seems lost.

During the last days of Narnia, the land faces its fiercest challenge -- not an invader from without but an enemy from within. Lies and treachery have taken root, and only the king and a small band of loyal followers can prevent the destruction of all they hold dear in this, the magnificent ending to The Chronicles of Narnia.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:19 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

When evil comes to Narnia, Jill and Eustace help fight the great last battle and Aslan leads his people to a glorious new paradise.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 22 descriptions

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