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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THERE ARE OLD NARNIANS, AND BOLD NARNIANS, BUT NO OLD BOLD NARNIANS
It is a bleak time for the Narnians of old. The talking animals are all in hiding and men who call themselves Telmarines are ruling the land. The men of Telmar are afraid of and hostile to talking animals, the dryads and hamadryads, the naiads, centaurs, dwarves, and satyrs. They fear them and have tried to destroy them. The woods are silent and the dryads sleep, dreaming...
Published on 30 May 2007 by Michael JR Jose

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6 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Most Disappointing Adventure in the Series
Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy are awaiting the train that will take them to separate boarding schools when they are suddenly, and magically, pulled out of the station. They find themselves on an island that has been overgrown. Exploring further, they discover the remains of their old castle. They're back in Narnia years ahead of when they last left. When a dwarf appears,...
Published on 2 Aug 2003 by Mark Baker


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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THERE ARE OLD NARNIANS, AND BOLD NARNIANS, BUT NO OLD BOLD NARNIANS, 30 May 2007
By 
Michael JR Jose (the UK) - See all my reviews
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It is a bleak time for the Narnians of old. The talking animals are all in hiding and men who call themselves Telmarines are ruling the land. The men of Telmar are afraid of and hostile to talking animals, the dryads and hamadryads, the naiads, centaurs, dwarves, and satyrs. They fear them and have tried to destroy them. The woods are silent and the dryads sleep, dreaming of a free Narnia and better times. But the memories of old, free Narnia are alive and are passed on in secret. The nurse of Prince Caspian is just one who knows the exciting secrets of old, and there are many others. And so it happens that the young prince comes to love the old that is hidden more than the new that he will rule. But although the stories of old may feed the soul, they are dangerous to know. And that is the start of the prince's dangers and adventures. He may call on those free creatures who are in hiding, they may rally to his call, but will they be strong enough to overthrow their oppressors? He has one more magical link with the past, and he will use it at the moment of greatest need - the magical horn of Queen Susan bringing unknown help to those who use it, which has been preserved as a relic by the faithful.

The Chronicles of Narnia begin, as everyone knows, with `The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe'. This story, `Prince Caspian', is probably best read second in the sequence as it is a continuation of the original four's adventures. The High King Peter, King Edmund, Queen Susan, and Queen Lucy are summoned by magic back to Narnia to aid Prince Caspian in time of crisis. The story of `The Magician's Nephew' goes back to the beginning of Narnian time and a little earlier in our world's time to tell how Narnia was created in the first place, and it is probably best read about fifth or sixth in the sequence, but at any rate before `The Last Battle' which tells how Narnia ends and is more frightening than the rest. The best loved of all the stories is probably `The Voyage of the Dawn Treader', partly because it is the longest and richest story in the series and is supremely well written. It is very easy to read but full of interweaving plots, and thrills on land and sea, and full of hard realities like how people behave while thirsty on short water rations and no land in sight. It is the jewel of the set, and fits perfectly in the middle. Reading about prince Caspian will help set the jewel in your mind.

`Prince Caspian' is also an interesting story because it explains so much of the magic of Narnia, and gives those who wish to see an insight into politics, history (ours and Narnia's), battles, and human psychology. It is particularly revealing to see what a prince's education involves: some literature, some mathematics, some social graces, some skills in entertainment and music, some politics. Some people do not like this story because it is about a war, but it really is about what leads up to war, what happens after, and how the individuals involved all react and cope. The actual fighting is a small part of the whole, unlike a modern action film which is heavy on the fighting and light on the people. Having said that, the storyline is one of the simplest in the set as we stay almost all the time with the four children together, who quickly resume their adult roles once in Narnia. When things threaten to overwhelm the brave few, Aslan is at hand but to their surprise he is not always easy to see.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A remembered pleasure, 12 Dec 2003
By A Customer
We discovered the Narnia books on tape 12 years ago when living in France and we drove hundreds of miles around Europe, two small children listening intently in the back seat, all of us captivated by the magic. Michael Hordern does full justice to the beautiful English prose, the complex characters, the extraordinary world where good struggles with evil -- the creation of a remarkable British writer. The music, composed specially for the series, complements it perfectly. Our tapes self destructed years ago and we are ordering the CDs now, looking forward to recapturing our remembered pleasure.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic story read by a classic voice, 18 Oct 2002
By 
If you never buy your children any other books or tapes, buy them Narnia! In fact, not just children, adults too. Life-changing stuff! If every child had Narnia when growing up then the world would be a better place.
The Michael Hordern versions have now been around for some time but if you like the idea of bedtime stories then this is a superb adaptation with a simple musical setting that adds more feeling to the story rather than detracting/distracting. Rather like having your father/grandfather read to you when you were young.
You're never too old to grow young.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Return to Narnia, 28 Nov 2007
By 
Timbertwig (UK) - See all my reviews
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"Prince Caspian" is chronologically the fourth book in the Narnia series but the second written by CS Lewis. It sees the return of the four Pevensie children - Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy - who first entered the enchanted land of Narnia in "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe".

In this second instalment, the four children aid Prince Caspian who must fight his Uncle Miraz for his rightful place as king, and restore Narnia as the land of the free where talking animals and magical creatures can once again live in harmony with humans.

"Prince Caspian" follows the classic theme of the weak overcoming the strong for justice and freedom. In this sense, the book has a predictable plot and suffers the "sequel syndrome" of not being as fresh or enchanting as the original. What it does have are memorable characters including Doctor Cornelius, Caspian's mysterious mentor; Trufflehunter the loyal badger; Trumpkin the agnostic but brave dwarf and Repeecheep the valiant mouse (though he does not truly shine and earn his reputation as one of the most loved characters from the entire series until the next book, "The Voyage of the Dawntreader"). There are also scenes that although seem minor when you read them, will stay with you long after you've read the last chapter, including when Caspian learns the truth about Miraz from Cornelius and when Caspian is reunited his old nanny.

This book is subtitled as "The Return to Narnia" and I think that perhaps this should have been used as the main title. The book for me serves only as an introduction to Prince Caspian who does not develop into a fully rounded character until the next title in the series. In this book, the focus is still very much on the Pevensie children and "their" return. It deals with their faith, relationships and struggles far more strongly than Caspian's. For instance it is Peter and not Caspian who must face Miraz in the ultimate battle.

But that aside, "Prince Caspian" is an enjoyable read and sets the scene very nicely for "The Voyage of the Dawntreader".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Prince Caspian - unabridged audiobook, 2 Aug 2011
By 
RR Waller "ISeneca" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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I mistakenly purchased an abridged audiobook of "Prince Caspian" to complete my set of Narnia but lost it almost as quickly surprisingly.
I rarely buy any audiobooks abridged or dramatised versions unless I can avoid them and I buy hardbacks, partly because they are often cheaper (obviously too heavy for the paperback brigade) but also because they feel like books.
I was not disappointed with this version; high quality recording, pleasingly read without too many efforts at strange voices. The CDs went to my grandchildren for future use and to make the set complete.

P.S. To Graspee: Thank you for this prudent advice. I will remove them "post-haste" and try to be more diligent and law-abiding in future!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Return to Narnia, 25 Feb 2009
Second to be written of the core Narina books (1951) and third in 'reading order'. I've never done this before in an Amazon review, but rather than write something of my own I realise that I can't do any better than the text I found on Wikipedia, which is a brilliant comparative study of Prince Caspian and the Bible, so in the hopes of more widely disseminating it, here it is:

"The two major themes of the story are courage and chivalry and, as Lewis himself said in a letter to an American girl, "the restoration of the true religion after a corruption" (Collected Letters, III, p. 1245). Aslan is portrayed by Lewis as a Christ figure. Aslan's father (the "Emperor-Over-Sea") is God the Father. Some believe the story is a parallel to Moses and the freeing of the Israelites. A more likely parallel can be drawn between the Israelites' war with the Philistines, with Miraz's duel with Peter being similar to David and Goliath. In I Samuel 28:3-25, Saul, desperate to receive an answer from God, has a witch to summon the spirit of Samuel, similar to Nikabrik summoning the White Witch in an act of desperation. Though Samuel is in no way a parallel to the White Witch, it is the concept of turning to evil in extreme situations instead of trusting in God, or in this case the power of Aslan. In 2 Samuel 2:1-5:5, the Israelites refuse to wait on the Lord causing them a grave defeat in battle. This is similar to how the Narnians do not wait for Aslan, and thus suffer a defeat at the Telmarine castle. The Telmarines are descended from pirates, and Philistines invaded Canaan as "People of the Sea." Edmund and Lucy assist Prince Caspian in his attempt to get to Aslan's country (over the sea) in Lewis' The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. The new Narnia can be seen as a parallel to the modern world, with a dislike of religion. "Who believes in Aslan nowadays?" asks Trumpkin when he first meets Caspian. Those who "hold on", like the badgers, are praised: this links with Lewis's views on religious faith. Faith is another of the major themes of the book."
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Prince Caspian, 7 April 2008
By 
Second book printed, fourth book chronologically.

I began re-reading the Narnia series after coming across a beautiful boxed set of all seven novels. Mainly this was out of nostalgia, as these were favourites when I was young, and I was interested to see how they held up as adults. I found them all to be written very clearly with provocative descriptive prose, and narrative that often draws the reader immediately into the story.

As the first real sequel to "The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe", this manages to draw out the story and history of Narnia so that Lewis' creation reaches its full potential. The character of Caspian is readable although a little stiff at times, and the dialogue does falter occasionally where elsewhere in the books it is very smooth. The description of the voyage and the encounters of the crew are imaginative and still feel very original, and the transformation of Eustace still brings a bit of a chill, even in hindsight!

Great for youngsters and very readable for grown-ups.

8.5/10
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars its excellent, 21 Mar 2001
By A Customer
Its is absolutely excellent, even though the chronicles of narnia are classed kids books I think they are suitable for all ages as they are absoultely fantasticIn Prince Caspian the characters Peter,Susan,Edmund and Lucy are called back into narnia when Civil war breaks out when the talking beasts come out of hidding and other Narnians join the side of Prince Caspian with the help from the children fight against the evil King Midas (caspians uncle) to win narnia back. The charecters are great and you really get hooked in to the book you just cann't put it down!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Return to Narnia, 16 July 2014
"Yes of course you'll get back to Narnia some time," says Old Professor Kirk at the end of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and the book leaves you wondering if they really will, but Lewis knows exactly what he's about and brings us the follow up. Narrated by Lynn Graham, this is a 4 CD set which I highly recommend. Prince Caspian is one of my favourite books with the children returning to a different Narnia than the one they left. Returning to a Ruined Cair Paravel, the children can't understand how this has come about within a year, until Edmund solves it for them. It's thousands of years later and they find Narnia in the midst of a war, ruled by cruel King Miraz who is after his nephew, Caspian's life, now he has a son of his own, but Caspian has at last found the talking creatures he has so earnestly sought. The children must seek Caspian in the company of a rather cynical Trumpkin who doesn't believe in Aslan and help to win Caspian his throan.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars C.S. Lewis did not like pirates, 2 April 2011
By 
This fourth novel starts with the abduction into Narnia by the magic horn Susan had received in the second novel and she had left behind, lost if you prefer, of the four kids from the railway station while waiting for the train to take them back to their boarding schools after summer recess.

They find themselves in their old Cair Paravel palace and the old treasure chamber where they recover their swords, bows and arrows, and other magic presents, except the horn that has been lost, misplaced if you prefer. On the following morning they save a dwarf to be drowned in the river by two soldiers who run away after a first and only arrow reached them.

The dwarf Trumpkin tells them the situation. Narnia has been conquered by the Telmarines from Telmar. The legitimate king Caspian 9th was assassinated by his brother and the lawful heir marginalized, and finally was going to be executed because his usurping uncle had just had a son of his own.

With the complicity of Professor Cornelius he escapes just in time and goes back to the old Narnians who had disappeared when the Telmarines had arrived. He is able to rebuild some kind of an army, but the usurper is on his tracks and war breaks out. The untrained and undisciplined old Narnians under the command of Prince Caspian are routed in no time and have to escape and find refuge in Aslan's How, a sort of monument built over the old Stone Table where Aslan had been executed by the White Witch to resurrect afterwards.

During these battles Caspian had blown the magic horn that abducted the four kids.

With the help of the dwarf they try to join forces with Caspian. But they get lost on the way because they don't listen to Lucy, the youngest child, because she is too young, and yet she is the only one to see Aslan who has come back, because she is the only one to believe in him. Edmund will be next, Peter quite later, and Susan will be last and reluctant.

They come just in time at Aslan's How when a bitter dwarf was going to call the White Witch back with the help of a Hag or bad witch, and a werewolf. They suggest to propose a single combat to solve the strife and that proposal comes from Peter who is the High King of Narnia, and many other things.

In spite of all logic the usurper accepts the challenge and is on the verge of losing when two of his courtiers cry treachery, kill the usurper and lead the Telmarine army into combat. The battle turns to Caspian's advantage when trees appear and walk and frighten the Telmarines. These come to a ford where there should be a bridge but that bridge has been demolished during the battle by Aslan and the girls with the help of some giant ivy.

The army is made prisoner and Aslan reinstates Prince Caspian on the throne as King Caspian X. The Telmarines are proposed either to stay and accept the new rule, in fact the re-instated old rule, or to go to a land of their own. We discover that they were able to rule over Narnia because they were humans, marooned pirates in some South Sea island where they had found a door to Narnia.

Aslan builds a door in the air with three sticks and suggests that the Telmarines go through back to their South Sea island. The do it only after the four children do it first, though the children will find themselves back on their railway station platform and the Telmarines in their island.

This novel makes it clear that Narnia can only be ruled by a son of Adam or a daughter of Eve. This simple fact has to be understood and it is not simple. These primitive populations of dwarfs and other non human humanoids plus all kinds of magical beings, beasts that speak and trees that walk have to be colonized by people connected to Adam, humans. The first kings were four children, then the White Witch, one fourth daughter of Adam, took over. Then another human race, the Calormenes try to take over, but the kings and queens are still the four kids. And finally here some humans who got stranded in Narnia had taken over and had to be pushed back to their island by the four kids.

Does it mean only human beings can rule the world, this one or the other world or worlds? Or does it mean that the only humans can rule this Narnia world respectfully, at least for the general ecology of nature and life, and yet all humans are not necessarily good for that, respectful of differences and of democracy, even if the only form of government can be a monarchy? Or, since Peter and Susan are excluded for the next episode because they are too old, does it mean only human children can rule Narnia?

That's the aspect of the saga that is most surprising and it can only be explained by the fact that this saga is written for children and the four children are the go-between for the readers to be able to identify with the heroes, the action, and Narnia itself. And the aim is to nicely encourage positive values in these readers, certainly not sever them from what definitely looks like western established ideas. After all these novels were written during the Cold War and C.S. Lewis refused science fiction, a genre for adults. He stuck to fairy tales after all.

But could the same situation have produced a de-westernized story that could have accepted that non-humans could perfectly well govern themselves in a democratic and humanistic way? We will of course never know.

Dr Jacques COULARDEAU
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