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The Chronicles of Narnia: Book one; The…
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The Chronicles of Narnia: Book one; The Magician's Nephew (original 1955; edition 1955)

by C. S. Lewis, Pauline Baynes (Illustrator)

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Member:MEWcon
Title:The Chronicles of Narnia: Book one; The Magician's Nephew
Authors:C. S. Lewis
Other authors:Pauline Baynes (Illustrator)
Info:Scholastic (1955), Paperback, 202 pages
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The Magician's Nephew by C. S. Lewis (1955)

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English (216)  German (2)  Spanish (2)  Dutch (2)  Polish (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Danish (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (226)
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Part of “The Chronicles of Narnia” series, “The Magician's Nephew” was completed in February 1954 and published by Bodley Head in London on May 2, 1955. The prequel “The Magician's Nephew” brings the reader back to the origins of Narnia where we learn how Aslan created the world and how evil first entered it. Digory Kirke and his friend Polly Plummer stumble into different worlds by experimenting with magic rings made by Digory's uncle. They encounter Jadis (The White Witch) in the dying world of Charn, and witness the creation of Narnia. Many long-standing questions about the world are answered as a result. The story is set in 1900, when Digory was a 12-year-old boy. He is a middle-aged professor and host to the Pevensie children by the time of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe 40 years later.

Original date: 1955 ( )
  faithfilly | Jan 30, 2016 |
Read this to my daughter, and she thoroughly enjoyed it. She's eager for me to start the 2nd book in the chronological order (The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe).

This book has very strong Christian themes and tones. Digory is referred to as the "Son of Adam", and Polly is referred to as the "Daughter of Eve". I personally found that a bit queer. I'm fine with the heavy Christian elements, but I'm skeptical that Aslan the Lion is familiar with the Holy Bible from Earth. In my opinion, those phrases should have been reworked, so they were less blatant.

The beginnings of Narnia is very similar to the beginnings of Arda in the The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien. Knowing that C.S. Lewis and Tolkien were friends, I see this world creation idea coming from song, as a common idea that they both shared, and worked into their stories. Both world creations, of course, having very similar biblical themes of a Creator, offspring, and discord, complete with an opposing power.

The story was delightful, but unfortunately, the grammatical style of writing is a bit difficult to read through. I only say this, because this book was written for children, but it doesn't read like a children's book. Unless, of course, the parents are reading it to their children; which I did, and it worked well.

Aside from the grammatical style, some poor writing habits made their way into the story. Many, very redundant, "said Digory" and "said Polly" sentence after sentence. And Aslan calling Digory the "Son of Adam" and Polly the "Daughter of Eve" frequently, was a bit obnoxious. It's for these reasons, I can't give it 5 stars. The language of the author is just a bit jarring.

Aside from that though, this is a fantastic story, and both my daughter and I are very eager to get on with the 2nd book in the chronological sequence. ( )
  atoponce | Jan 29, 2016 |
First, chronologically, in the Narnia series. This account, set at the end of the 19th century, features Digory and Polly, two rather bored children who find adventure when Digory's eccentric Uncle Andrew sneakily uses them for an experiment. They find themselves first in an ancient, dying world, where Digory behaves rather badly; later on, they become part of a new world, witnessing a Creation story, and enabling Digory to redeem himself.

Beautifully written, and can be read at so many levels: either as an exciting children's story, or with many metaphorical references to the Christian life. It's many years since I read it, and I'd forgotten much of the detail; I enjoyed it very much. Highly recommended.

Re-read March 2012 after considering the 'Planet Narnia' theories about planetary influences. I just don't see Venus in this book, but can believe that Sol (the sun) is more relevant. Enjoyed very much despite it being less than 18 months since I last read it! ( )
  SueinCyprus | Jan 26, 2016 |
Digory is lonely. He just moved in with his Spinster Aunt and Uncle. He befriends a new friend in a girl that lived next door, Polly. On one of their adventures they sneak through the tunnel in the attic into Uncle Andrew's study where is hangs out most days. Its in the attic that they find out that Uncle Andrew is the keeper of fairy magic and had the capabilities to go to other worlds. Digory is tricked into participating in going when Uncle sends Polly against her will. Its in these other worlds that Digory and Polly witness the creation of a wonderful world, plus release the thing that is going to be the demise of the beautiful world, the White Witch.

This is my first time reading this series. For the first one it was a great back story. I liked it book, and seeing its children's literature it was an amazingly fast read. When i first started it, I was warned of the Christian undertones, and I have to agree reading it knowing that I can definietly see them. It's not a bad thing at all, it teaches the children morals that now a days, in my opinion, children are lacking. ( )
  alwelker | Jan 25, 2016 |
Digory is lonely. He just moved in with his Spinster Aunt and Uncle. He befriends a new friend in a girl that lived next door, Polly. On one of their adventures they sneak through the tunnel in the attic into Uncle Andrew's study where is hangs out most days. Its in the attic that they find out that Uncle Andrew is the keeper of fairy magic and had the capabilities to go to other worlds. Digory is tricked into participating in going when Uncle sends Polly against her will. Its in these other worlds that Digory and Polly witness the creation of a wonderful world, plus release the thing that is going to be the demise of the beautiful world, the White Witch.

This is my first time reading this series. For the first one it was a great back story. I liked it book, and seeing its children's literature it was an amazingly fast read. When i first started it, I was warned of the Christian undertones, and I have to agree reading it knowing that I can definietly see them. It's not a bad thing at all, it teaches the children morals that now a days, in my opinion, children are lacking. ( )
  alwelker | Jan 25, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 216 (next | show all)
"The Magician's Nephew" glows with the sort of mythology that C. S. Lewis created at his best, replete with religious and philosophic implication. At the same time, it held my children, and me, spellbound from start to finish.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Times Book Review, Chad Walsh (pay site) (Oct 30, 1955)
 

» Add other authors (20 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
C. S. Lewisprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baynes, PaulineIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Baynes, PaulineCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Branagh, KennethNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Georg, ThomasIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hallqvist, Britt G.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hane, RogerCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hämäläinen, KyllikkiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lavis, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Neckenauer, UllaÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nielsen, CliffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rochère, Cécile Dutheil de laTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Van Allsburg, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
To The Kilmer Family
First words
This is a story about something that happened long ago when your grandfather was a child.
Quotations
A terrible thirst and hunger came over him and a longing to taste that fruit. He put it hastily into his pocket; but there were plenty of others. Could it be wrong to taste one? After all, he thought, the notice on the gate might not have been exactly an order; it might have been only a piece of advice - and who cares about advice?
Now the trouble about trying to make yourself stupider than you really are is that you very often succeed.
For what you see and hear depends a good deal on where you are standing: it also depends on what sort of person you are.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Please do NOT combine "The Magician's Nephew" with "The Chronicles of Narnia".
Unabridged - please do NOT combine with any abridged edition.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0064471101, Mass Market Paperback)

This large, deluxe hardcover edition of the first title in the classic Chronicles of Narnia series, The Magician's Nephew, is a gorgeous introduction to the magical land of Narnia. The many readers who discovered C.S. Lewis's Chronicles through The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe will be delighted to find that the next volume in the series is actually the first in the sequence--and a step back in time. In this unforgettable story, British schoolchildren Polly and Digory inadvertently tumble into the Wood Between the Worlds, where they meet the evil Queen Jadis and, ultimately, the great, mysterious King Aslan. We witness the birth of Narnia and discover the legendary source of all the adventures that are to follow in the seven books that comprise the series.

Rich, heavy pages, a gold-embossed cover, and Pauline Baynes's original illustrations (hand-colored by the illustrator herself 40 years later) make this special edition of a classic a bona fide treasure. (Ages 9 and older) --Emilie Coulter

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:23 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

When Digory and Polly try to return the wicked witch Jadis to her own world, the magic gets mixed up and they all land in Narnia where they witness Aslan blessing the animals with human speech.

(summary from another edition)

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