Tag: Fantasy

All Things Charn (Part II)

Lewis heavily drew on pulp SF and fantasy tropes to create the masterpiece that is Charn; but he also drew on the good old-fashioned fire and brimstone of The Bible. Since it was, and may still be, the most-read book in Western Civilization, it’s natural that many of its stories influenced fiction of a fantastic …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 9/9/20: Narnia XV

One of the questions I always wanted answered about Narnia-the-world is that of other civilizations. Sure, we had Narnia; then Telmar, dull and problematic as it was, and Archenland in Prince Caspian; in the next book Galma, Terabinthia, Calormen, and the Seven Isles came along, then Ettinsmoor and the Underworld in The Silver Chair. But …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
8/26/20: Narnia XIII (Let’s
xxxxTalk About Charn)

Charn vies with Tashbaan as my favorite Narnian fantasy setting. Not that I’d want to live there, of course. It’s dead, dry, and spooky. But Charn in its prime… well! It must have been something to see. One of the reasons it’s so evocative is the name. It’s short and blunt, like a location of …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
8/19/20: Narnia XII

The Magician’s Nephew ranks third (tied with The Horse and His Boy) as my Chronicles favorite for the Weird Tales awesomeness that is Charn. As I wrote in The Wild Lands of the North, Lewis was more than a little influenced by the pulps (and the pulps influenced by Lord Dunsany and E. R. Eddison, …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
8/12/20: Narnia XI

The Horse and His Boy ties for my third favorite of the Chronicles with The Magician’s Nephew. Perhaps Nephew has the edge, because of the awesomeness of Charn, the Wood Between the Worlds, and  Aslan’s Garden. But Horse has Tashbaan and the desert. It’s a close call. The flavor is different from the rest of …

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Why I Hate Prince Caspian

I admit Prince Caspian has its moments, like the madcap romp with Bacchus and the maenads. But compared to the rest of the Chronicles of Narnia, I don’t like it very much. In fact, I’d rather it didn’t exist at all. There’s no need for it to. The same themes of The Lion, the Witch, …

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The Many Faces of the White Witch – Part III

I’m going to round out these posts with some depictions that, while they don’t depict the White Witch, would make very nice White Witches. The first would-be witch is the Winter Carnival Snow Queen. These depictions are common in the English theater form known as the Pantomime, or panto for short. Pantomimes are usually performed …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
7/29/20: Narnia IX (Let’s Talk
xxxxAboutTelmar)

  In last weeks’ Worldbuilding Wednesday I took a look at the etymology of Prunaprismia and how other women of Telmar might have been named. This week, I’ll look at the men. I think Lewis designed his names with French and Spanish in mind. The pronunciation of them, glottal and oily, recalls spoken Italian as …

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The Many Faces of the White Witch – Part II

In 1984 The Lion, the Witch, and Wardrobe received its first official stage treatment, and it’s been staged regularly ever since. In fact, it’s become a staple of children’s theater. It’s easy to see why. The story is simple, the characters memorable, the action clear-cut. Though it seems it would be difficult to do with …

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Putting Narnia in Order

How should one read the Chronicles of Narnia? As originally published, or in chronological order? That is hard to say, because C. S. Lewis wrote the books in neither. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe was completed in early 1949 and published roughly 18 months later in October 1950. Hot on its heels Lewis …

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