3.23.2015

Book Review: Live Like a Narnian

I am here today to share my last book review for this month.  I apologize in advance for the lapse in posting this week – I will be out of town for spring break and didn't have time with work and everything to get this week's posts scheduled in advance.  So, I apologize, and now, let's get into the book! 
Title: Live Like a Narnian: Christian Discipleship in Lewis's Chronicles

Author: Joe Rigney 

Publisher/Price: Eyes & Pen Press / $10.63 here

Type: Nonfiction
Genre: Christian Living
Number of pages: 184
My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Overview: The purpose of Rigney's little book is to show throughout the Chronicles of Narnia, that Lewis's Christian worldview and principles were alive and well, and his practical observations help the reader apply these things to their lives.  This book is for the advanced Narnian – those who have loved the world of Aslan from their childhood and want to dig deeper into the stories.  The book is perfectly formatted, a couple chapters devoted to each of Lewis's chronicles.  From digging into Deep Magic, seeing the manliness of King Lune, and being awed by the beauty of Aslan, this book is the ultimate companion for anyone who wants to dig deeper into the Lion's world.  

My thoughts: I loved this book.  It was a delight to read.  I have been a devoted fan of Narnia ever since I first listened to the audiobook when I was little.  As I've grown up, that love has continued to grow and I am always looking for books that look deeper into the Chronicles.  Above the others I've read, I could tell right from the beginning that this author absolutely loves the Chronicles of Narnia and he knows them like the back of his hand.  Obviously, this is what I want when I read nonfiction, but his enthusiasm for his subject came out so well in this book, it made me love it even more. 

I love the way this book was set up.  It was formatted in a very logical, practical way that made it easy to get into and it held my attention – I didn't want to put it down – which is rare for a nonfiction book.  The book's chapters are arranged in order of the books in the series with a couple chapters devoted to each book.  Also, the chapters are fairly short, all under 10 pages, most of them closer to 5.  I loved this – it kept me interested and it was also super easy to put down and come back later.  I find that when chapters are shorter, it is harder for me to become distracted.  
One of the things I realized when reading this book was that there are so many deep, profound themes all throughout the Chronicles of Narnia that it takes someone much smarter and wiser than me to point out.  This phenomenon, however, is what C.S. Lewis loved about good fairy tales – the ability for everyone to enjoy them, from children to adults.  And while the author explores awesome, profound things through these stories, he does so in a way that they don't become confusing or feel heavy.  He makes even the deepest message of Lewis's chronicles utterly accessible.  I loved that.  And while I love reading about deep, profound subjects, I think the practicality and accessibility of the themes in this book kept me from losing interest.  
And finally, my favorite thing above this book is how much it made my love for Narnia grow.  I haven't always loved reading the series, but after reading this book, I immediately wanted to start reading it aloud to my little brothers, find a new edition to get for myself, and read all the books again.  I love that.  I think that should be the point of books about books.  They should point the reader back in the direction of the book they are talking about.  Just like writers of books on the Bible want their reader to ultimately be inspired to return to the Word, I think that is ultimately the goal of writers of books like Live Like a Narnia.  And in this case, it was absolutely successful.  
Live Like a Narnian not only encouraged me to return to Narnia, but to come out with a new set of eyes – to see the world in a different light and to notice the light of Aslan a little more, that I can seek the Lion in this world, and find Him more beautiful.  
Please, please, please buy this book if you are any sort of fan of Narnia and you can thank me later.  It has endeared me to Narnia even more, and showed me things I wouldn't have seen on my own.  
And that wraps up my reviews for the month of March!  Where has time gone?  I was just saying it was crazy that it was March already!  Once again, I apologize for being MIA this coming week, and I will write again in April!  Thanks for reading! xo, Ella

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