The Last Battle by CS Lewis
The last installment of the Narnia Chronicles is a dark, twisted and often confusing story that is still highly debated to this date. Dripping with supposed religious allegory and with the dark and often depressing tone it can be quite full on, especially for younger readers.
Starting out with “In the last days of Narnia” sets a somber tone for the remainder of the story. King Tirian is now ruling Narnia after the events of The Silver Chair. A talking ape named Shift and his friend Puzzle the donkey team up to make the donkey look like Aslan using a lion skin and convinces a group of talking animals to do his every wish.
Shift moves onto the Calormen, who enslave talking animals, and convince them that Tash, the bird-headed god of Calormen and the lion Aslan (hence the name) are both the same.
Upon learning of this, Tirian attempts to speak out against it, but the Narnian's have already fallen prey to Shift's words and with Calormen soldiers now in Narnia it is too late.
Tirian prays to Aslan for help and Eustace and Jill return to Narnia to aid in not saving the country, but preparing for its imminent destruction. You can feel Tirian's desperation and hopelessness of the situation as the whole country has turned against him. Tirian has his own unicorn Jewel, a deadly creature not for the faint of heart that will stop at nothing to protect his master.
One of my favourite things about this book is the way it is interpreted by the reader. This rings true in most of Lewis's book but no more than in this story. I have spoken to dozens of people about this book and everyone got something different from it. Each individual had different messages, themes and interpretations of the story and this is something that no other book (apart from the Bible) has managed to achieve in history. It is a big call but upon reading this novel you will understand why.
In the final act of the story Narnia welcomes the return of three of the our Pevensie children, with Susan notably missing due to her forgetting about Narnia and choosing not to believe anymore. Polly and Digory from The Magicians Nephew re-appear as an older couple as do the Pevensie's parents to be taken to Aslan's Country, a much larger and more complete version of Narnia.
One of the more interesting allegories in this novel is when Digory makes the comparison of Aslan's country to Plato's philosophy, in that every object in the physical world has a related ideal in the metaphysical realm. Combining this idea with fantasy fiction and Christian ideas of the afterlife provides a satisfactory conclusion to the book and after the country has been emptied and Aslan leaves, Narnia falls to ruin and is drowned in fire and lava.
The great thing about doing this, it ensures that no future stories about Narnia can be written in Lewis's universe. He was careful to mention that passing through to Aslan's Country was just the beginning of their adventures in Narnia and it was a happy life moving forward.
A lot of debate about religious allegory and the appropriateness of this book for children has been discussed for many years since the books 1956 release. Through all of this it is best to read this finale with an open mind and interpret your own meaning from there. It is worth every second you spend with it and has fantastic re-read value.
The Last Battle is the perfect conclusion to the Narnia chronicles and is a stellar example of how to conclude a series in a satisfying manner.
This The Last Battle book review was written by Alaisdair Dewar
All reviews for: The Chronicles of Narnia
The Magician's Nephew
The Chronicles of Narnia: Book 1
On a daring quest to save a life, two friends are hurled into another world, where an evil sorceress seeks to enslave them. But then the lion Aslan’s song weaves itse...
The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe
The Chronicles of Narnia: Book 2
The Horse And His Boy
The Chronicles of Narnia: Book 3
Bree, the horse, has been kidnapped from Narnia and longs to return there. Shasta, on the verge of being sold into slavery, decides to run away with him in search of the ho...
The Chronicles of Narnia: Book 4
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
The Chronicles of Narnia: Book 5
A king and some unexpected companions embark on a voyage that will take them beyond all known lands. As they sail farther and farther from charted waters, they discover tha...
The Silver Chair
The Chronicles of Narnia: Book 6
Eustace and Jill are whisked to the land of Narnia where Aslan, the great Lion, needs their help to find the missing Prince Rilian, Caspian’s beloved son. The search ...
The Last Battle
The Chronicles of Narnia: Book 7
Narnia... where lies breed fear... where loyalty is tested... where all hope seems lost. During the last days of Narnia, the land faces its fiercest challenge—not an ...
Have you read The Last Battle?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
The Last Battle reader reviews
Dant from US
I didn't see how apologetics was used in this book but I was told by other Christian readers that it is. Could someone help me?
7.5/10 from 2 reviews
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
His Dark Materials
"Without this child, we shall all die." Lyra Belacqua and her animal daemon live half-wild and carefree among scholars of Jordan College, Oxford. The destiny that...
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
L Frank Baum
Dorothy Gale and her little dog Toto are in for the ride of their lives when a tornado drops them off in the Land of Oz. Can Dorothy and her new friends survive the perils ...
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
A hot summer’s day on the riverbank, and young Alice is bored. Bored, that is, until a white rabbit in a checked jacket scurries past in a great hurry, examining a po...
Return To Allapatria
Shelley E Parker
Daniel's school holidays are interrupted when, via a ley-line that passes through the goldfish tank in his bedroom, he is transported to a parallel world - in which he ...
Joshua of Gaia: The Lost Elderzamia
Could you leave your world behind to save another? A fading world, an ancient evil and an impossible task for one boy. When Joshua is faced with the choice to fight or hide...
Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams
Fourteen-year-old Will Burrows lives with his family in London. He has little in common with them except for a passion for digging which he shares with his father. When his...
Eye Of Osiris
Five children from Shipley find a crystal that transports them to a mysterious hallway of magical treasures and doorways to other worlds. All five enter the dark world of O...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
Best of 2016
A small group of commuters and tube workers witness a fiery apocalypse overtaking London. They make their escape through a service tunnel. Reaching a door they step through......
It is for the entities known as Sleepwalkers to cross the doors between dreams, and hunt the nightmares that haunt sleeping minds. Theirs is a world of impossible vistas, wher...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
Ceda, now a Blade Maiden in service to the kings of Sharakhai, trains as one of their elite warriors, gleaning secrets even as they send her on covert missions to further their rule. She knows the dark history of the asirim--that hundreds of years ago they were enslaved to the kings against their will--but when she bonds with them as a Maiden, c...
Dead Men Naked
After the sudden death of his best friend Neil, involving a 6-foot giant crow and quite some Tequila, Lou’s life takes an unexpected turn towards the impossible. As L...
Age of Assassins
Girton Club-Foot, apprentice to the land's best assassin, still has much to learn about the art of taking lives. But their latest mission tasks him and his master with ...
A Conjuring of Light
The precarious equilibrium among the four Londons has reached its breaking point. Once brimming with the red vivacity of magic, darkness casts a shadow over the Maresh Empi...
Sebastien de Castell
Falcio val Mond, First Cantor of the Greatcoats, is on the brink of fulfilling his dead King's dream: Aline is about to take the throne and restore the rule of law once...
The Boy with the Cuckoo-Clock Heart
Edinburgh, 1874. On the coldest night the world has ever seen, Little Jack is born with a frozen heart and immediately undergoes a life-saving operation. But Dr Madeleine i...
The republic faces annihilation, despite the vigilance of Galharrow's Blackwings. When a raven tattoo rips itself from his arm to deliver a desperate message, Galharrow...