The Magician's Nephew by C. S. Lewis

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If you like magic and mythical creatures, then The Magician’s Nephew is the book for you! If you’ve read The Hobbit, then this book is the same, it tells the beginning of the story, explains how everything works, and how it got there. These two books are like a prelude, or an introduction to a song, it gets you ready for the big picture- the juicy stuff!

The Magician’s Nephew is about a little boy, Digory, who lives with his Aunt and Uncle, and mother in London. He’s outside one day when a little girl, Polly- his neighbor- comes and is teasing him for crying, but to her surprise, he tells her how his mother is very sick and how his Uncle Andrew is a mad man. She soon apologizes. The two become best friends and are hanging out one day in her attic (their attics were connected by rafters, granting access to another’s house) and wanting to find out what’s in the deserted house next to Digory’s. They try and figure up the math to see how many steps it would take to get to that house, because in the rafters there is no way of knowing which house you’re in; and once they think they’ve got it, the children set off in search of what is really in the deserted house. They got to a door, thinking it’s to the deserted house, but when they open it, to their dismay they find out it’s the door to Uncle Andrew’s forbidden study!

Now Uncle Andrew, or to Polly Mr. Ketterley, was standing in his study and quite happy to see the two children. See, Uncle Andrew was a magician, or so he thought. He had been conducting experiments using these magical rings- two yellow and two greens- with the yellows able to transport you to another world- a calmer, more peaceful world- and the greens able to bring you back home. Uncle Andrew was a mean old curmudgeon, and tricked Polly into touching one of the bright, shiny yellow rings, vanishing her at that very second, right out of his study. Digory, the most shocked about it all, was freaking out and getting mad at his uncle for being a coward and not going into this ‘new world’ of his himself- keep in mind that Digory does not know for sure if this world actually exists or not. He then gets the other yellow ring and the two greens, on for him and one for Polly, and heads into this new world.

When Digory gets there, he floats up out of this pool, but to his alarm, he isn’t the least bit wet. He then finds Polly lying down on the grass, and the two slowly piecing everything back together about what just happened, suddenly realize that there are many other pools just like the one they came up out of. Digory then hands Polly her green ring and they decide to hop into another puddle, thinking, hoping, that it will lead into another world, and thinking that the world they were in were just an in-between world. They held hands, and on three jumped in together. When they opened their eyes, they were in another world, this one was called Charn. This ancient city was full of tall, old, run-down buildings and ruins. Digory and Polly explored this new world, then they came into a room full of people, or at least what used to be people, giant people, all who’ve seemed to have been frozen in stone, all sitting around a large stone table, but at the end was a woman. This woman was different from the others; you could tell that she held all the authority just by the way she stood, how her clothes were better, nicer, and by the fire in her frozen gaze. In this room was an alter, upon which held a bell on top with a hammer next to it. Digory hit the bell with the hammer, and by doing so he awakened that woman, the evil sorceress Jadis; and with awakening her, the whole world was starting to fall apart, but when Digory and Polly tried to switch rings to go to the in-between world, Jadis grabbed a hold of him and was then able to be transported also. Jadis is able to catch a hold of him yet again to follow him back into his own world: Earth.

Jadis is convinced that she is gonna take over and rule Earth, and sets out and starts destroying and hurting many people; however, before she did too much damage, Digory and Polly grabbed onto her heel and got her back into the in-between world. Still having a hold of her they hop into a puddle, thinking its Charn, but to their alarm, it wasn’t; it was a black world, nothing was there. Then they all heard a soft song, beginning to grow louder and louder, and then a sun arose in this black world and before their eyes they saw a lion. Beautiful and great was he, singing this most powerful and soothing song, from which was creating something. By the beat of this song, a new world was forming: grass sprung up out of the ground, trees and flowers grew, lakes and rivers formed, and then animals arose from the ground underneath. This was Narnia, and now, Digory was at fault for bringing an evil into it. Aslan, the lion, told Digory that it was his job to try and fix things; he needed Digory to bring him a seed to plant so a tree could grow that would keep the witch away for many thousands of years. Digory and Polly were now starting their journey to save Narnia.

The Magician’s Nephew is a great read for people who love fantasy books. C. S. Lewis includes many different qualities that contribute to this genre. From his magical rings and witches, to his talking animals, this book offers a story of two children who enter this enchanted world, whom it would be their job to save. It is an amazing book that you won’t want to put down.





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