"The book is a film that takes place in the mind of the reader." ~ Paulo Coelho

Monday, January 21, 2019

The Silver Chair Read-Along: Part I

Through the month of January, Amber of Seasons of Humility is hosting The Silver Chair Read-Along! Since I wasn't able to participate in her last read-along, and The Silver Chair is the fourth book in my favorite series, so I am here to participate!
To see Amber's thoughts for this week and to join the read-along, click HERE.

Yeah, there will be spoilers. So if you haven't read The Silver Chair, please don't read any further!

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair ~ Chapters 1-6
Discussion Format: your favorite quotes, general impressions, and four questions to answer for each week's reading

Favorite Quotes:

'They were making a riotous noise, but it was much more like music -- rather advanced music which you don't quite take in at a first hearing -- than birds' songs ever are in our world. Yet, in spite of the singing, there was a sort of background of immense silence.'

"When they were dragging themselves upstairs to bed, yawning their heads off, Jill said, 'I bet we sleep well to-night'; for it had been a full day. Which just shows how little anyone knows what is going to happen next."

General Impressions:

Unlike the other times I have read this, I am noticing that there is a lot of difference in the characters and their perspectives. Sometimes that is good, but at other times it isn't. Even the scenery changes, depending on how you look at it.:
'It would have been a depressing place on a wet evening. Seen under a morning sun, with a fresh wind blowing, and the air filled with the crying of birds, there was something fine and fresh and clean about its loneliness."

To me it seems like he is the most hopeful of all of the characters. He hoped that he might get back into Narnia and he has hope that they will find the lost Prince. The Narnia air and the knowledge that Aslan chose them makes him stronger. He really is trying to be better than he was. With that said, he thinks he knows what is best for Narnia, and gets annoyed when it is not going that way. I think he is the one I relate to the most.

"'It's an extraordinary thing about girls that they never know the points of the compass,' said Eustace. 'You don't know either,' said Jill indignantly."

"'Now, will you say the words after me?' 
'What words?' asked Jill. 
'The words I'm going to say, of course.' answered Eustace."

Jill seems to have the biggest range in emotions. One moment she is sad, then angry:
'Jill suddenly flew into a temper (which is quite a likely thing to happen if you have been interrupted in a cry).'
then excited, then full of pride, then sad, then scared:
"'It must be a dream, it must, it must,' said Jill to herself. 'I'll wake up in a moment.' But it wasn't and she didn't.". 
For some reason I'm having a harder time understanding her then the other times that I have read it. A lot of things don't happen the way she thinks they are going to. At one point she is so excited to be going on an adventure, then she claims she is "sick of adventures". Isn't life one big adventure? Do we ever get tired of it? We just need to keep on, and remember the signs.

'The window looked west into the strange land of Narnia, and Jill saw the red remains of the sunset still glowing behind the distant mountains. It made her long for more adventures and feel sure that this was only the beginning.'

"'How beastly one feels after sleeping in one's clothes,' said Jill, sitting up.
'I was just thinking how nice it was to not have to dress,' said Eustace.
'Or wash either, I suppose,' said Jill scornfully."

At one point, Puddleglum tells Jill:
"'Ah,' said the Marsh-wiggle, shaking his head. 'I see you're making the best of a bad job. That's right. You've been well brought up, you have. You've learned to put a good face on things.'"
But, why does he shake his head as he does it? Why is he always so depressing? He claims that he isn't, he says:
"...but I'd better not tell you that story. It might lower your spirits, and that's a thing I never do."
Which obviously shows us how what we think of ourselves is wrong. Though, sometimes he has caution when the others don't, which maybe shows us that he is wiser then we think.

You can't really explain Aslan. He is so powerful. I'm just going to put down the quotes that I think describe him the best.:

'It was deeper, wilder, and stronger; a sort of heavy, golden voice.'

'She knew at once it had seen her, for it's eyes looked straight into hers for a moment and then turned away -- as if it knew her quite well and didn't think much of her.'

"'I have swallowed up girls and boys, women and men, kings and emperors, cities and realms.' said the lion. It didn't say this as if it were boasting, nor as if it were sorry, nor as if it were angry. It just said it.'"

"'Scrubb said that we were to call to---to Somebody---it was a name I wouldn't know---and perhaps the Somebody would let us in. And we did, and then we found the door open.'
'You would not have called to me unless I had been calling to you,' said the Lion.
'Then are you Somebody, sir?' said Jill.
'I am.'"
This last one, wow! That is so... profound. This is an amazing allegory: It really relates to our relationship with God.

One last thing to mention: fear. How being afraid can effect how you do things. It has effected each of the characters. Fear can stop you, right in your tracks. Once you are afraid, everything is harder. At the mention of Ettinsmoor:
"At this there was a greater tu-wooing than ever, and noises of birds shifting their feet and ruffling their feathers, and then all the owls started speaking at once. They all explained how very sorry they were that they themselves could not go with the children on their search for the lost Prince."

Discussion Questions:

1. What do you think of Jill's first impressions of Aslan and Narnia? If you were in her shoes, how might you react to the Lion and the new world in which you arrived?

I know so much more about Aslan, I'd like to think that I'd act differently, but if I were in her shoes and had never heard of Him or Narnia, I would probably be scared like her.

2. Which scene or character has made you laugh (or smile) the most so far? What makes it (or him/her) so amusing?

The whole conversation between Scrubb, Pole, Trumpkin, and Gilmfeather! We quote it on a day-to-day basis! "What do you mean the girls are all killed? What girls and who killed 'em?"

3. How did the recounting of Prince Rilian's disappearance make you feel? If this is your first time reading the book, do you have any theories about what happened to him and why? If you've read the book before, did you notice anything new or more impactful when rereading this scene?

To me, this time I really was focusing on Drinian's part in it. The way he, of all the people, is worried about Rilian, and how he takes the blame for Rilian's disappearance. He just really seemed like a true friend, to me.

4. What do you think has been Jill and Eustace's greatest challenge so far on their journey? What do you think they might struggle with in the future based on how they've already acted?

I think having the constant fear of giants. It makes them annoyed with each other and impatient. That's what fear can do to you.

Thank you so much to Amber for hosting this! I am excited to continue reading this!

Have you read this book? What do you think? Do you agree with me?



  1. I love the quotes you chose to share throughout your post! That second one in your favorites section is so true. :)

    It's great to hear your thoughts about the main characters, especially since you're very familiar with this story already. And your thoughts on how fear is playing a part in this, featuring that quote about the parliament of owls...so good! Sad reality, but insightful reminders.

    Your answer to the second question is awesome! I love that you quote that scene in daily life! It's too funny. :D Like poor Eustace being called "useless"... "I dare say he is." LOL

    Thanks so much for taking time to participate in this read-along! Excited to read your thoughts for the next discussion. :)


    1. Thanks, Amber! I think I might have gotten a little carried away. Yes, it definitely is!

      Yes, I'm so excited to be rereading this! All of the characters are some of my favorites of all time! Fear, sadly, is a big part. And I can relate to that because I have been scared many too many times to count. But it is a good reminder to have courage, and keep going!

      We started quoting it when my sister first read the books, and only years later when I read them did I fully understand! It is such a funny scene! Ah, yes, being called "useless". "But is that any reason to bring him to court?" XD

      Thank you so much for hosting! Sorry that this reply and this week's discussion is late! I'm getting part 2 up right away!

  2. Great post! I really enjoyed it! Love the quotes you selected. I loved this observation you talk about at the end of your impressions, "How being afraid can effect how you do things. It has effected each of the characters. Fear can stop you, right in your tracks. Once you are afraid, everything is harder." Isn't that the truth? Fear has kept me from a lot of things that would be enjoyable if I just stepped out of my comfort zone. Ack! Again, great post and am looking forward to seeing what you think of this week's reading.

    1. Thanks, Julie! I'm so glad! C. S. Lewis has some of the best quotes. :) Yes, it is a sad reality, but we need to remember it in order to do more things! I know I could definitely have done a lot if not for fear. Fear has power, but we can't let it take a hold of us! Thank you so much for reading, Julie!


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