I have looked forward to my children being old enough that I started liking the books I was reading to them. Many of the books I read are still very young (my son just turned five, and my daughter is 16 months older.) In many ways, The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe is still too old for them. But I do think that this is one of the books that you do not need to understand every little bit to enjoy the book. We discussed it as we went on. I occasionally used different words when I was reading to if I knew they wouldn’t understand it. And they were still introduced to a lot of new vocabulary.
I do not know anything to say about the book other than when I read as an adult it is hard to believe that leaving the Beaver’s house is not until the 10th of 17 chapters (50% of the way through the book) and the children don’t meet Aslan until the 12th chapter (65% of the way through the book).
Movies are a good way to conclude reading a book. It gives a different type of visualization, and I like talking to kids about what is different and how stories work. (No, I don’t think they get most of that, but I talk about it anyway.) I think this was only the second or maybe the third time I have watched the 2005 movie. That version of the film is 140 minutes, which is long for a kid’s movie. My five year old checked out several times and was not paying full attention. And while the film is reasonably faithful, there is always those decisions that I just do not understand. One minor example is at the end of the movie after Lucy uses her magic elixir to heal Edmond; in the book, Lucy is reluctant to leave Edmond until he is fully well. But Aslan talks to her about duty and the importance of all of the others that are also injured besides her brother. She understands and does her duty (what is portrayed as hours of work). In the movie, Edmond is fully healed, there are hugs and then Aslan looks at her and she goes to do the work which is not shown.
Changing from it being a topic of duty to her idea, changes the scene. The basic story is not changed, but it alters the point by making Lucy the originator of the plan to heal. And at the same time reduces the actual work so it minimizes what the duty would have been as well as the work that the kids can do. I am not looking for a shot by shot recreation of the book. But I do like keeping some of the nuances of how the story is told even if it is missing some of the details. You cannot even in a fairly long movie match the detail of even a short kid’s book like this.
We did not listen to the audiobooks, but if you are a fan of audiobooks and you are a member of Audible and purchase books with credits, there is a new ‘box set’ of the Chronicles of Narnia that includes all seven books for a single credit. That is very good deal since you can get all for the same price as you can get any single one. The only negative of this is that the audio is not synced to the text this way, so you or your child cannot follow along with the text in the book.