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Book Club Kits: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

Alamance County Public Libraries offer Book Club Kits for check out to area book clubs. Each kit contains 10 copies of a book and a reading guide.

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Book Summary

"This is the land of Narnia," said the Faun, "where we are now. And you - you have come from the wild woods of the west?"
"I - I got in through the wardrobe in the spare room," said Lucy.

Lucy steps into the Professor's wardrobe - but steps out again into a snowy forest. She's stumbled upon the magical world of Narnia, land of unicorns, centaurs, fauns... and the wicked White Witch, who terrorizes all. Lucy soon realizes that Narnia, and in particular Aslan, the great Lion, needs her help if the country's creatures are ever going to be free again...

Discussion Questions

  1. Why do the children have to leave London?
  2. Who is Mr. Tumnus and where does he take Lucy?
  3. What curse is Narnia under?
  4. Why does the professor's house seem like a place where one could slip into a magical world?
  5. What does Christmas mean to Christians? Why is it sad for it to be “always winter and never Christmas?”
  6. On the sledge, why does the White Witch sit up higher?
  7. Why is it significant that the White Witch's sledge is pulled by reindeer?
  8. Why can't Edmund get enough Turkish Delight?
  9. Literary Allusion: There is a looking glass on the wardrobe. What famous English children's fantasy does this remind you of?
  10. Simile: The Queen makes Edmund a hot drink out of magical drops on the snow: “Edmund saw the drop for a second in midair, shining like a diamond.” What figure of speech does Lewis use?
  11. Why do you think Lucy cries when the other children doubt her story about Narnia?
  12. In Narnia the children aren't sure at first whom to trust. Edmund introduces this idea because the White Witch had been so “nice” to him. Why can it be difficult to know whom to trust? Why doesn't Edmund notice that the White Witch's smile “isn't so nice”? Why doesn't he notice what's happening to him?
  13. Where is the Beavers' house?
  14. What will happen to the White Witch once two Sons of Adam and two Daughters of Eve come to rule at Cair Paravel?
  15. Who is Aslan?
  16. At the Beavers' house the children look up the river. Edmund notices two small hills that make him think of Turkish Delight and being king. Why?
  17. What is the feeling of the meal the children eat at the Beavers' house? Look closely at the details. Why does each person feel “contentment” at the end of the meal? How does this sort of food compare to the effect of Turkish Delight?
  18. When the children learn of Aslan, they are filled with wonder and excitement, but Edmund “felt a sensation of mysterious horror.” Why?
  19. Is Father Christmas different from the way we think of Santa Claus? Why do the children feel “solemn” in his presence?
  20. Outside the Queen's castle, Edmund sees many animal statues, including a lion on whom he draws a mustache and spectacles, in order to make fun. Still, he doesn't “get any fun out of jeering at it.” What does this suggest about Edmund?
  21. Why does the Queen hate to hear Aslan's name?
  22. Foreshadowing: How do we get the idea that a battle is coming?
  23. Paradox: When the children see Aslan they understand that something can be “good and terrible at the same time.” How could this be?
  24. In the story, Sons of Adam go before animals. Do you think human beings are more important than animals? Why or why not?
  25. Why does the Witch want to kill Edmund?
  26. What is the law about traitors according to the Deep Magic?
  27. Why does Aslan allow himself to be killed?
  28. After Aslan and Edmund speak, Aslan brings him back to his siblings and says “... there is no need to talk to him about what is past.” What sort of talk does Aslan want the children to avoid?
  29. When an ogre shaves Aslan, the crowd jeers at him. At first he looks different to Susan and Lucy, but moments later he appears “brave, and more beautiful, and more patient than ever.” Why does Aslan, even in such a terrible position, still look strong?
  30. Why is it important that Edmund does a good job in the battle against the Witch?
  31. When Aslan slips away, Mr. Beaver explains that you cannot hold Aslan down. He says, “He's wild, you know. Not like a tame lion.” Where in the story do we see evidence of the fact that Aslan is “wild”?
  32. Structural Device: Why do you think the author has the characters return to the real world at the end of the book?
  33. How did you feel when Aslan died?
  34. Explain what “fate” is and ask students if the children were “fated” to become Kings and Queens. Ask them if they believe in fate.
  35. Which character did you like the best? Why?