Tag: YA

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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Narnia First Editions

First editions of the Narnia books, grouped all together.

All Things Charn (Part I)

Charn is my favorite Lewisian creation … more than Aslan, more than Narnia itself. No other place in fantasy embodies such grandeur, sinisterness, and decadence … which is quite the accomplishment, as Lewis only gives hints of it. Jadis herself says, in a reflective moment: I have stood here when the whole air was full …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
9/2/20: Narnia XIV

So, with The Last Battle, we come to the end of the Narnia series, and of Narnia. There’s not much to say, except “Everybody dies.” Or sort of. Really, it’s not as bad as all that. I actually started to read Battle immediately after LW&W, and was rather confused, as you can imagine. I wanted …

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Prince Doofus

I am not sure what language this is (Czech?) but the book seems to be Prince Caspian, going by the prominence of Susan’s bow and horn, Reepicheep, and Trufflehunter on the borders. The second creature from the left could be one of the Bulgy Bears, or a de-maned Aslan. The goofy “wizard” of the central …

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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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Stone Knife and Stone Table

Even in contemporary children’s and YA books (as of 2020, when I am writing this) it’s hard to think of a more shocking passage than the White Witch killing Aslan at the Stone Table. Four Hags, holding four torches, stood at the corners of the Table. The Witch bared her arms as she had bared …

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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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Mock-up

The Dawn Treader mock-up used in the movie, looking less than impressive next to modern dock equipment.