Sunday, January 17, 2010

Book 10: The Chronicles of Narnia: The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis

I never read the entire Chronicles of Narnia as a kid. I started the series and read "The Magician's Nephew" and "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe," and then I guess I lost interest. So I thought the CR would be a great reason to pick it up again.

"The Horse and His Boy" is technically the fifth book in the seven book series, according to Wikipedia, but if you go by the timeline of the series, it's considered the third book. Shasta is an adopted boy raised as a slave by a fisherman in the province of Calormen. One night, Shasta overhears his "father" planning to sell him to a nobleman. Rather than allow this to happen, he decides to run away to the North. He talks to himself as he plots, and the nobleman's horse overhears him and answers him. It turns out he's a talking horse named Bree who was kidnapped (horsenapped?) from his home in Narnia and forced to live as a war horse for the Tarkaan nobleman. He longs to return to Narnia, so he and Shasta make a run for it. Along the way, they meet up with Aravis, a Tarkeena (noblewoman) also on the run with her own talking horse. She's avoiding an arranged marriage; her horse, Hwin, is hoping to return to her home in Narnia like Bree.

The novel is a quick read, the tale of Shasta & Aravis's adventures as they travel north. It's also rather boring. I don't know if that's due to the fact that it's written for much younger readers than I, or if I just don't care for Lewis's style of writing. Although I did enjoy some of his short stories, but they were aimed at more mature readers. Either way, I can't say I really want to finish the series. Maybe if I can't think of anything else to read...

As a kid, I never saw the whole Aslan/Jesus Christ comparison. But now, reading the series as an adult, I can't believe I missed it. Holy crap, is it obvious.

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