Retrospective Wednesday is a chance to look back at great books published in previous years, some decades ago. All are worthy of a second (or first) read.
The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis is the 5th book in the Chronicles of Narnia. This is the only book in the Narnia series that looks at a story within a story. It takes place during the reign of Peter, Edmund, Susan, and Lucy. It could be book 1 1/2 placing it somewhere before the ending of The Lion, the Witch , and the Wardrobe. But it was published 5th in the series by Lewis and the story is mentioned in the 4th book as something you will be told later, so it is 5th.
In this story a slave boy, Shasta, and a horse, Bree conspire to run away together to Narnia. Bree, a talking horse, wants to return to his homeland and Shasta wants to avoid another horrible master. On their journey they join up with a girl and another talking horse, Hwin, also heading for Narnia. Along the way they discover a plot by the son of the Tisroc to overthrow Narnia. Thus begins a race to see who will get to Narnia first, the children and the horses, or the son of the despot. Along the way they encounter Aslan, the great lion of Narnia. He has wise things to say to everyone and guides them, even when they don't know they are being guided.
Of the seven book in the Chronicles of Narnia series this is probably my least favorite, but it is only a notch down from the others. Aslan's interactions with the horses and children are so touching. When they ask him questions about others, Aslan replies that he only talks to us about our stories. He deals with everyone on a personal level. C.S. Lewis explained that Aslan represents Christ. Knowing this a head of the reading makes these passages and interactions even more precious.
|Reading A Horse and His Boy together on the Puget Sound.|
My daughter and I are reading the series together aloud this summer. Even though this is at least the fourth time I've read the series, so much of it seems new, like I'd never read it before. I delight in books that have something new to say to me every time I read them. I hope you consider reading The Chronicles of Narnia someday, too.
30 books this Summer Reading Challenge
15 / 30 books. 50% done!
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Question of the Day: What is your favorite children's book that you think every parent should read to their children?
Answer: I have two. The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear by Don and Audrey Wood and Jamberry by Bruce Degen. I never tired of reading both of these books to my children.