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The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (1950)

by C. S. Lewis

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46,20676531 (4.1)828
Four English schoolchildren find their way through the back of a wardrobe into the magic land of Narnia and assist Aslan, the golden lion, to triumph over the White Witch, who has cursed the land with eternal winter.
  1. 161
    The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander (FFortuna, Polenth, Omnigeek)
    Omnigeek: Classic Welsh mythology transformed into a children's fable enjoyable for all ages. The Book of Three is the first of Lloyd Alexander's pentology, The Prydain Chronicles, and starts the growth of young orphan (and Assistant Pig Keeper) Taran into a man.
  2. 100
    Five Children and It by E. Nesbit (Polenth)
  3. 113
    The Neverending Story by Michael Ende (GWoloszczuk)
    GWoloszczuk: Another story were a child goes to a fantasy world.
  4. 1915
    Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J. K. Rowling (Patangel)
  5. 40
    The Secret Country by Pamela Dean (wordweaver)
    wordweaver: This is a YA novel that takes the group-of-kids-discover-a-portal-into-a-fantasy-world idea found in the Narnia books and uses it to explore issues of the imagination. The world the children in this story encounter appears to based upon a fantasy game they had been playing, and many elements of that game were influenced by books the children had read, clearly including the Chronicles of Narnia.… (more)
  6. 97
    The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (krizia_lazaro)
  7. 20
    Inkheart by Cornelia Funke (MissBrangwen)
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    The Door Within by Wayne Thomas Batson (multilingualmaid)
  9. 21
    A Walk out of the World by Ruth Nichols (bookel)
  10. 10
    A Soul as Cold as Frost by Jennifer Kropf (Anonymous user)
  11. 00
    The Gruesome Green Witch by Patricia Coffin (bookel)
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    The Door in the Closet by Josephine Daskam Bacon (bookel)
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    Elidor by Alan Garner (Anonymous user)
  14. 00
    Fairest of All by Sarah Mlynowski (JenniferRobb)
    JenniferRobb: Both books have children passing through a portal into a different world. Mlynowski's is the fairy tale world of Snow White; Lewis's is Narnia and is a Christian allegory.
  15. 00
    The Storm Keeper's Island by Catherine Doyle (MissBrangwen)
  16. 11
    What I Learned in Narnia by Douglas Wilson (CherylLonski)
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    Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Ruled by a white witch, a wintry forest - enchanted and treacherous -- doesn't deter a young girl from trying to save a spellbound friend. Filled with fairy tale elements, both of these affecting fantasies speak to universal longings.
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(see all 36 recommendations)

1950s (10)
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1970s (603)

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» See also 828 mentions

English (739)  Spanish (7)  Italian (3)  Dutch (3)  Hungarian (2)  Portuguese (Portugal) (2)  Finnish (2)  Greek (1)  Danish (1)  German (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Polish (1)  All languages (763)
Showing 1-5 of 739 (next | show all)
It's World War II, and the parents of Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy Pevensie have sent them from London to the country home of Professor Digory Kirke. There, they are safer from the Nazi bombs, but not from a much grander adventure. In this early classic of the fantasy genre, the children find the entrance to the mystical world of Narnia in the back of a wardrobe. In that otherworld, the help the great lion Aslan defeat the evil White Witch. Despite the fact that Lewis wrote the novel as a Christian allegory, the book is often challenged by religious groups. Among other things, critics deride the use of talking animals (thus making them seem equal to humans) and the inclusion of a witch and other monsters. Opponents have also claimed that the book leads children to be rebellious and ignore the warnings of their elders. ( )
  Library_Guard | Jun 17, 2024 |
The four Pevensie siblings, Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy, go on a very unusual adventure, entering through a wardrobe into a unknown land. They enter Narnia, and meet a strange assortment of characters, including animals who can talk. The greatest is Aslan, the Great Lion, who rules Narnia, but has gone away. There has been a time of unrest, when an evil witch has cast a spell over the land, but with the appearance of the Pevensie children, all that is about to change. This adventure story is a wonderful tale for children as well for adults. The first in the series, it introduces the characters and the land of Narnia. This very well-written story is a classic that shouldn’t be missed. ( )
  Maydacat | Jun 9, 2024 |
Finished reading this to my daughters (mostly to my two oldest; 8 and 6), and they both absolutely loved it. Obviously the overt Christian references went over their heads, but they very much enjoyed the story. We typically read one chapter a night, missing a few nights. But they hung on every word and were rarely bored and disinterested. The death of Aslan was a bit 'hard' for them at their ages, but they handled it pretty well and understood the nature of fiction and that death happens. They loved hearing the kids grow up and come back out of the wardrobe in the final chapter. We are now moving onto the rest of the Narnia books. ( )
  BenKline | May 30, 2024 |
This is a very famous portal fantasy for children. It is well-told, in an informal narrative tone that works nicely for this kind of book. It's like the narrator is telling the story aloud, so I enjoyed listening to it as an audiobook.

Unfortunately the story itself is not very good. Lewis is doing a religious allegory here, with Aslan playing the role of Christ. I'm fine with that, but here's the thing about allegoric stories: you can tell great stories with deeper themes like that, but the story itself has to be good, and this one isn't. It's too heavy-handed, the characters are treated like they are too special for no good reason. They don't do much to deserve it or to advance the plot. It's just Aslan/Christ doing things.

Nevertheless, it's captured the imagination of generations of children. It has something to appeal. It's just that I think there are better stories for this target audience.

By the way, start the series here. This should be read in original publication order:

1) The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
2) Prince Caspian
3) The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
4) The Silver Chair
5) The Horse and His Boy
6) The Magician's Nephew
7) The Last Battle ( )
  jcm790 | May 26, 2024 |
- For middle School
- A book about a 2nd world where kids stumble into and adventure. It is a deep, thought provoking book with beautiful allegories and a call for adventure! I would love to have this in my future classroom, tactfully of course.
  stewartj22 | Apr 24, 2024 |
Showing 1-5 of 739 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (30 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
C. S. Lewisprimary authorall editionscalculated
Baynes, PaulineIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Birmingham, ChristianIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bovenkamp-Gordeau, Madeleine van denTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dan San SouciIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dillon, DianeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dillon, LeoCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hague, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hane, RogerCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hämäläinen, KyllikkiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lavis, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mac Lochlainn, AntainTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nielsen, CliffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rettich, RolfIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tetzner, LisaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Van Allsburg, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
York, MichaelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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To Lucy Barfield
My Dear Lucy,
I wrote this story for you, but when I began it I had not realized that girls grow quicker than books. As a result you are already too old for fairy tales, and by the time it is printed and bound you will be older still. But some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again. You can then take it down from some upper shelf, dust it, and tell me what you think of it. I shall probably be too deaf to hear, and too old to understand a word you say, but I shall still be
your affectionate Godfather,
C. S. Lewis
First words
Once there were four children whose names were Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy.
"It means," said Aslan, "that though the witch knew the Deep Magic, there is a magic deeper still, which she did not know. Her knowledge goes back only to the dawn of time. But if she could have looked a little further back, into the stillness and darkness before Time dawned, she would have read there a different incantation. She would have known that when a willing victim who had committed no treachery was killed in a traitor's stead, the Table would crack and Death itself would start working backwards."
"How stupid of me! But I've never seen a Son of Adam or a Daughter of Eve before. I am delighted..."
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Unabridged. Please do not combine with any abridged edition.

Please do not combine ISBN 0007206054 (abridged movie storybook) with original full-length book.

Please do not combine The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe with The Chronicles of Narnia.

ISBN 0001857010 is also an abridged version.
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Four English schoolchildren find their way through the back of a wardrobe into the magic land of Narnia and assist Aslan, the golden lion, to triumph over the White Witch, who has cursed the land with eternal winter.

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Haiku summary
Though some gender roles

are outdated, the story

stands the test of time.


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