C.S. Lewis was heavily influenced by his friendship with J.R.R. Tolkien and that influence is evident throughout the book “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.” Lewis, an agnostic before his friendship with Tolkien, displays his deep faith and belief in Christ with the allegorical penning of this book. His efforts contain the very basic tenets of Christianity and Christ’s life and ministry on earth are quite evident in the book as well. Initially the book was written as a fairy tale for Lewis’ children, but after it was published it soon became an international that has influenced the vast majority of fantasy novels that came afterwards. The book’s setting is England during World War 11. England is where four siblings; Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy (the youngest) are sent to stay with the ‘professor’, relocating to the middle of the country. It is during their sojourn there that Lucy discovers an enchanted wardrobe. Stepping through the wardrobe leads directly to the land of Narnia, a magical land. It is in Narnia that the children discover an evil with that rules there and enforces a permanent winter throughout all of Narnia. “The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe.” by C.S. Lewis is an allegory of Christ’s life on Earth and Christianity’s basic tenets. It was originally written as a fairy tale for Lewis’ children, however it soon became an international phenomenon that influenced all fantasy novels to come after. It starts off in World War II England where four siblings, Peter, Susan, Edmund, and the youngest Lucy, are sent to ‘the professors’ house in the middle of the country. Soon Lucy finds an enchanted wardrobe that leads to the land of Narnia, where an evil witch rules and keeps the land in a permanent winter. Lucy returns from Narnia and tells the other children of her discovery. Edmund decides to travel there and does so, meeting the evil witch while wandering in a forest. The witch enchants Edmund and forces him to return through the cupboard with a scheme that would bring the other children into Narnia. While the children are attempting to escape from Macready, the professor’s servant, they hide in the wardrobe.
Narnia is on the other side of the cupboard door waiting for them. They children go ‘exploring’, and wind up in the middle of the enchanted forest, lost. The children are in dire straits without any food or hope of salvation. Just as they are ready to give up hope, a beaver appears and leads them to his warm, comfortable abode. It is there that the children learn of a great lion, Aslan, who, it is prophesied will destroy the witch, break the spell of the dreadful winter and restore the kingdom to the “Sons of Adam” and the “Daughters of Eve”. While no one is watching, the still enchanted Edmund, creeps out of the abode and betrays the other children to the Queen, while also telling her of Aslan. This information, as well as Edmund’s actions, is the catalyst of a mad race to Stone Table, by the children, Edmund, and the Witch. Stone Table is where Aslan is rumored to be gathering an army to combat the evil witch. Upon the witch’s arrival, she invokes a Deep Magic that causes Aslan to die for Edmund’s betrayal. Like Christ, Aslan is resurrected. He returns in all his glory and enters into a fight to the death with the evil witch. Aslan is victorious. After the battle, Aslan returns the land to its original state where righteousness reigns once again. A very allegorical story, the symbolism is not lost on the reader, and is quite readily evidenced. If, what the reader is looking for is a well written story that is an easy read, and the reader is willing to overlook the obvious and read just for enjoyment, then this book will fulfill those needs. If a more spiritual message is sought, then that can be found in this book as well.