Back to Narnia–With a Question

All right, I couldn’t stay away any longer. I’m headed back to Narnia, via The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

I like to read them in the order C.S. Lewis wrote them, which is not the chronological order. As a writer myself, I’m interested in how he went about writing the Narnia books. Always looking to learn new tricks.

For those Christians who either despise these books, or who just don’t see the point of them–well, I’m not here to tell you that you should like them, what’s the matter with you? No. But bear with us who love Narnia. These stories by C.S. Lewis, a recovering atheist, do speak to us. Once you’ve seen Jesus in these stories, you can’t un-see him.

Like all good stories, the Narnia tales show me something new every time I read them. Usually I revel in Lewis’ prose style–which looks as simple as can be, but just try imitating him! He can say more in two or three sentences than I can say in a whole page. So I’ve given up trying to imitate him.

This latest visit to Narnia has raised a question in my mind. As soon as I thought of it, I laughed. Narnia fans, cast your minds back to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and the children’s visit to the Beavers’ house, and ask yourselves…

“Where in the world did Mrs. Beaver get her sewing machine?”

Think about it. The sewing machine in our world was part of the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century–in other words, we had to reach a pretty advanced stage of technology before we could invent the sewing machine.

But back in Narnia, Mrs. Beaver has one. What? Does this not imply the existence of a factory where sewing machines are manufactured? And if sewing machines, why not… well, things like steam engines and gunpowder and printing presses, etc?

I’m not trying to pick holes in Narnia. No–I’m delighting in C.S. Lewis’ boldness as a fantasy writer. I wouldn’t dare put a sewing machine in my books!

It leaves me shaking my head, with a smile on my face.

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