The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by CS Lewis

Lewis does not need a big bad enemy or an apocalyptic event to make a Narnian story engaging.
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader book cover

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader: A fan favourite, subpar movie, one of the more popular books of the Narnia chronicles. It also houses one of the best introductions to a book that I have ever read.

There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it. His parents called him Eustace Clarence and masters called him Scrubb. I can't tell you how his friends spoke to him, for he had none.

The third adventure (or fourth you decide!) in the Narnia series has Lucy and Edmund living with their cousin Eustace - a boring and traditional soul who doesn't believe in stories or magic - in London while Peter and Susan are away at school.

One day while passing a painting of a ship, the picture comes to life and the three are sucked into it and find themselves aboard the Dawn Treader, reunited with the now King Caspian who is in search of the seven lost Lords of Narnia who where sent away by his evil uncle Miraz.

The great thing about this story is that there is no apocalyptic event that threatens the existence of Narnia but rather a simple rescue mission and an adventure on the sea that has mermaids, dragons, lost treasure, and pirates, the invisible and loveable Dufflepuds, Coriaken and Reepicheep as a main character.

Lewis does an incredible job of making Eustace a comparable character to Edmund in LW&W, only more obnoxious. The transformation of Eustace, literally into a dragon, and then being saved by Aslan is one of the greatest chapters in the book.

Story wise this is a complete departure from any of the other Narnian stories and this echoes through the various adventures had in the book, the characters are hard to reflect on, as Eustace clearly becomes the focus of the book as the future bearer of Narnian adventures.

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader is the second most popular book in the Narnian series and proof that Lewis does not need a big bad enemy or an apocalyptic event to make a Narnian story engaging.

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The Voyage of the Dawn Treader reader reviews

from Israel


Arguably the last great story in the chronicles of Narnia. The story feels more like a collection of short story depicting the adventures amongst the “dawn treader”. The stories are fun and full of wonderful adventures. On the downside - the Christian subtexts start to be less subtle (“in your world, I am known by another name”, etc.) and the educational parts (Eustace back story and resurrection, Lucy spying on her friends and being envious on Susan, etc.) start to overwhelm the story, though at least so far they’re somewhat good educational values in contrary to latter books. Overall it’s great fun.

8.3/10 from 2 reviews

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