Author: Text adapted from the original by C. S. Lewis
Illustrator : Matthew Armstrong (art) and Robert Sabuda (paper engineer)
Audience: Ages 6 and older
Summary: C. S. Lewis’s classic Narnia books spring to life in the hands of award-winning paper engineer Robert Sabuda. Each of the seven books in the series has its own pop-up spread rendered in spectacular detail with stunning special effects. Experience a different adventure from Narnia on every spread in the beautiful pop-up book as the corresponding book from the series is briefly summarized: from Aslan’s creation of Narnia to its destruction and the transporting of all of the faithful to “Aslan’s Country.”
Literary elements at work in the story: This is a fantasy fiction story set in and around the mythical land of Narnia. When summarized as the stories are for the pop-up book, it’s easy to see the thread of salvation history that runs through all of the Narnia series, just as Jack Lewis intended. But the undoubted star of the book is the pop-ups themselves. Children are drawn into the books through the amazing artwork. Once there, it’s easy to draw parallels for them between the fantasy stories and the stories from the Bible that children know so well.
Perspective on gender/race/culture/economics/ability: From beginning to end, Narnia emphasizes diversity: of gender by having heros both male and female, race through the use of magical creatures and fantasy lands that surround Narnia, and the abilities of all creatures – young and old, magic and mortal, royal and common – to resist evil.
Scripture (from the King James Bible): Genesis 1: 14 – 19
Theology: The series of the Chronicles of Narnia are an obvious retelling of the Christian story so you will find theology on each page of the pop-up book: from Creation, to a battle won through the efforts of a young boy, to the end times where the faithful (“all who have been loyal and true”) are taken to another land.
Faith Talk Questions:
- Aslan creates stars, sun, & grass by singing. How does the Bible tell us God created the heavens and the earth?
- Does the child, Shasta, remind you of a young boy that becomes a hero in the Bible?
- When Narnia finally comes to an end, all of the faithful are led by Aslan to his country. In what ways does this remind you of Heaven?
Review prepared by Kelly Hames, MACE, Entering Cohort Fall 2008