C.S. Lewis’ magical fable, The Silver Chair, takes readers on an adventure where marsh-wiggles take life seriously, gnomes eat precious stones, and two English school children are transported to Narnia to find and rescue its lost prince, Rilian. It follows the trek of Jill, Eustace, and their marsh-wiggle guide, Puddleglum as they encountered talking beasts, man-eating giants, and many other perils on their journey to restore Narnia’s heir. Although they had been given specific guidelines to follow by Aslan, their misadventures began when they allowed themselves to be distracted by the many temptations they encountered. Whether they find Prince Rilian and rescue him or die in their attempt will ultimately depend on following the signs they had been given.
The deeper meaning conveyed throughout The Silver Chair is that if one is on an important mission or sacred quest it is vitally important to stay on track and not allow distraction to lead him or her astray. It was shown in the story as the heroes repeatedly failed to stay on course and thoroughly complicated their mission, nearly losing their lives in the process. After several days of walking through the wild and dangerous “lands of the north,” the travelers met a beautiful woman and heavily armored knight and were encouraged to stop for rest with the “gentle giants” at the castle of Harfang. Although their guide, Puddleglum, was suspicious, the children were completely led astray and nearly paid dearly for their mistake.
Just one of the wonderful offerings in C.S Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia series, The Silver Chair is an entertaining novel that leaves the reader contemplating its timeless message for a long time to come.