Eustace has returned to the world of Narnia with his classmate, Jill Pole. The two friends are charged with a quest to find the missing Prince Rilian, who disappeared ten years ago. Joining them in their journey to the North is a Marshwiggle named Puddleglum, who guides them through the lands of giants.
This book just gets better and better every time I re-read it! Rereading it this time around, I was struck with how many times forgetting and remembering are mentioned. The whole theme of the book is about remembering Aslan’s instructions regarding the quest. Unfortunately they often forget the instructions and the signs that they are supposed to look for along the way. This theme has another spiritual layer as well, since we as Christians have been given spiritual instructions about how to live a holy life, but we often forget and make mistakes.
The characters in this book have a very different dynamic than in previous books of the series. The first books follow the Pevensie siblings who are all very close and affectionate with each other. But Eustace and Jill are barely even friends in the beginning, and they are grumpy and peppery with each other through most of the book. It’s kind of funny to see their different personalities and how they interact, but they both have excellent character development!
There are just so many wonderful Christian themes and parallels in this book! It is amazing to me how deep and how specific the imagery is that represents particular verses from the Bible. Every time I read this book it is like a breath of fresh air and a joyful light.
The story itself is wonderful, with an exciting plot and magical setting. The characters are deep and complex, with lots of character growth. The writing paints a picture with only a few words, and calls up strong emotional responses in the reader. There is just something so enchanting about this story that has appealed to generations of readers!