‘The Voyage of the Dawn Treader’, the fifth book of the internal chronology of books in the ‘Chronicles of Narnia’ series by C.S. Lewis is a swash-buckling adventure set in the magnificent imaginative seascapes of the Eastern Sea of Narnia. C.S. Lewis has created for us a fascinating geography littered with strange islands, each containing their own mysteries and adventures, as the crew of the Dawn Treader heads eastwards in search of the seven lost Lords of Narnia.
One of the tremendous capacities of novelists who specialize in fantasy or science fiction, particularly epic story tellers such as C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien, is their extremely vivid geographical imagination. Such writers are able to draw the reader into mystifying and exciting worlds, which are at once familiar as they often are based on real world landscapes and fantastic in the sense that they contain many weird creature-characters that are obviously not-of-this-world. The ability of novelists to create a journey of discovery through an astonishing yet entirely tangible space lies at the heart of great adventures, such as ‘The Hobbit’ (Tolkien) and ‘Dawn Treader’ (Lewis).
Another Narnia saga begins in ‘The Voyage of the Dawn Treaer’ as soon as King Caspian and ship’s crew rescue our three protagonists (Lucy, Edmund and Lucy) from the foaming waves after they were magically immersed into a painting of a ship and the sea hanging on a bedroom wall. This trick of entering into a ‘new world’ through a magical porthole, mirror or picture is an effective novelist’s technique. In this case it is easy to imagine the three young heroes (although Eustace is initially a very reluctant and unlikely one) suddenly entering into a turbulent seascape of peculiar archipelagoes, landfalls, magicians, dragons, pirates, invisible beings, narrow escapes, exploration and camaraderie.
Each island in the Great Eastern Ocean represents a different set of challenges and new mini-adventure facing the crew of the...
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