Dreaming Novel Things: Who Were You in English Class?

dreamingnovelthingsDreaming Novel Things is a feature in which I discuss book related subjects, but in a creative way. I’ll use interviews, narratives and lists to talk about book trends, book opinions and bookish matters. If you have any book related subjects you’d like to see me discuss just leave me a comment below!

So I’ve been preparing for my high school reunion which is coming up in… seven years and I was reminiscing the good old days in English class. The people in that class were definitely characters and are burned into my memory as types (I know that sounds bad); for example– the know it all type, the couldn’t care less type and the crack a joke every minute type. Then I started thinking about who I was to my class mates, did I fit into a type? So I made a handy dandy guide to figure it out, scroll down if you want to know who you were in English class. (But be prepared, you may not like what you see).

hermione grangerThe Know it All Type:  This person is often mistaken for obnoxious but this is an unfair accusation. This person CAN’T HELP THEMSELVES. The moment a book is assigned this person reads it using sticky notes on every page, types up their notes to further analyze them and has the essay done all before the class discussion day so they can answer every question the teacher asks and even ones they didn’t ask. This person can usually reference any book at the top of their head and if they can’t pull it from the top of their head they have it written down somewhere in a notebook that they carry on their person. They know about all the small irrelevant facts of their favorite authors and their hand is always the first one up when class begins. Often before the teacher has even begun talking.

ron weasleyThe Couldn’t Care Less Type: This person didn’t care why the author wrote the curtains blue. They didn’t care if there were several themes to be found in the novel. They read it and that was it. They either enjoyed it or not but they didn’t look for hidden meanings because they DIDN’T CARE. During class discussions they roll their eyes because they think it’s ridiculous to assume that because the author made the curtains blue that the author was ‘really’ trying to symbolize depression. They think the author made the curtains blue, TO MAKE THE CURTAINS BLUE. They might read for enjoyment not for any literary insight. They are often seen at their desk staring into space, lost in thoughts about lunch.

thCAOVTCU0The Make it Up as You Go Type: This here is our procrastinator. It’s not that they don’t like reading it’s just that they are always putting it off to do something else. So by the time the class room discussion rolls around they are left struggling to say something that makes sense. They usually try to repeat what someone else has said but try to rephrase it so that it sounds like a different opinion. For instance, one person could say “I thought C.S. Lewis used Aslan to represent Jesus Christ in the Christian religion.” Then our ‘make it up as you go’ type person would say, “I almost think Lewis was giving us subtle hints with that character Aslan. It almost seemed that he was referencing the Christian religion.” Then our person will nod eagerly to emphasize their point.

To be honest with you guys, I was the make it up as you go type. I’m a HUGE procrastinator and for some reason when someone said that I HAD to read a book, I didn’t want to read it. That led to a lot of awkard moments of me pulling things to say out of thin air. (I pulled it off though)! 😉

Who were you in English class?  Share it below and happy reading!

The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis

84369*This Review does contain Spoilers

Novel Facts:

  • Published: September 4th, 1956
  • Publisher: The Bodley Head
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Series: The Chronicles of Narnia
  • Pages in Paperback: 118
  • Preceded by (chronologically): The Silver Chair
  • Quote: “The term is over: the holidays have begun. The dream is ended: this is the morning.”
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The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis

121763Novel Facts:

  • Published: September 7th, 1953
  • Publisher: Geoffrey Bles
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Series: The Chronicles of Narnia
  • Pages in Paperback: 114
  • Preceded by (chronologically): The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
  • Followed by (chronologically): The Last Battle
  • Though it was the 4th published out of 7 novels it takes place 6th in Narnian history
  • Quote: “Suppose… suppose we have only dreamed and made up these things like sun, sky, stars, and moon, and Aslan himself. In that case, it seems to me that the made-up things are a good deal better than the real ones. And if this black pits of a kingdom is the best you can make, then it’s a poor world. And we four can make a dream world to lick your real one hollow.”
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The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis

140227Novel Facts:

  • Published: September 15th, 1952
  • Publisher: Geoffrey Bles
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Series: The Chronicles of Narnia
  • Pages in Paperback: 116
  • Preceded by (chronologically): Prince Caspian
  • Followed by (chronologically): The Silver Chair
  • It was the 3rd published out of 7 novels though it takes place 5th in Narnian history
  • Quote: “There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it.”
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The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis

horseboyNovel Facts:

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This is the story of an adventure that happened in Narnia and Calormen and the lands between, in the Golden Age when Peter was High King in Narnia and his brother and two sisters were King and Queens under him. It is during this glorious era in Narnian history that Shasta, a young boy living in Calormen with a cruel man who claims to be his father, dreams of traveling to the unknown North. One night he overhears his “father” offering to sell him as a slave, and Shasta decides that now is the time to begin his journey. When he meets Bree, a Talking Horse of Narnia who is a slave himself, the two decide to escape together.

The pair soon encounters Aravis, a high-born girl escaping a forced marriage, and Hwin, another Talking Horse. The travelers must combine their wits and all their strength to reach the freedom they long for. And when they discover a Calormen plot to conquer Narnia, they must also race against time. The battle that ensues matches in excitement any of the adventures described in C.S. Lewis’s previous two books of the Chronicles of Narnia. Assisted by the majestic Aslan, the Kings and Queens of Narnia, first introduced in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, once again rise to the occasion to defend their kingdom.

Review of the Characters:

Shasta (a.k.a. Prince Cor)– He was a typical hero. Starts off as poor slave boy and then goes on a journey in which he proves his worth. Even though he was typical he was enjoyable to read. I loved that Lewis gave him the courage to face a lion without any weapons but when it came to battle Shasta was shaking in his boots. He was a young boy with a good heart which is somewhat surprising considering he was raised with a hateful and spiteful guardian. I guess that’s a whole nature vs. nurture argument and we certainly don’t have time for one of those.

Bree– He was definitely not what I was expecting, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I guess from the title of this novel I was expecting a wise horse that would help Shasta realize all that he can become but that wasn’t the case. If anything, Bree learns from Shasta in that he is humbled. Bree was this big, egotistical creature that almost let his proud nature allow Archenland to be overcome, but alas he is humbled two times. First when Shasta goes back to save Aravis and Hwin from the lion and secondly by Aslan himself. Bree was an example we should all take to heart, sometimes we can be extremely self-centered. (A lot of the time for me).

Aravis– Though Aravis also suffered from pride she was still a great example for all girls. She proved her strength many times especially when she was recognized by her friend. She reacted quick and thoughtfully. She definitely had to learn a lesson about being considerate but once again, it’s something all people have to learn and so made Aravis all the more realistic.

Hwin– Believe it or not she was one of my favorite characters throughout the whole novel. She was so simple and because of this at times she was the smartest creature in the room. Though she was no war-horse she proved to be just as noble if not more so than Bree, no doubt fully intended by C.S. Lewis.

Review of the Story:

I really enjoyed the story though it was not what I was expecting. From the title I was expecting a story about the relationship between a horse and boy (I can feel everybody thinking the words: literal-minded). I thought maybe the horse and boy would learn from each other and both walk away for the better because of it but throughout the majority of the novel they did not spend any time together. The story was not really about their relationship but rather them as separate beings. Also, I would have liked it if C.S. Lewis had given the reader more on the history of Calormen such as where does Tash originate from but besides these factors Lewis has written another charming story.

Review of the Writing:

Just as in his previous novels Lewis writes in a tongue-in-cheek way that speaks to children. He interacts with the reader as if he were there in person telling you this story around a fire, making it all the more magical. Also I liked that there was no moment that felt rushed as in Lewis’s previous novels. Overall, he accomplished what he wanted too, a child’s dream.


The Horse and His Boy makes an excellent contribution to the Chronicles of Narnia and deserves just as much attention as Lewis’s popular The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. He wrote an enchanting coming-of-age story with magical influence creating a story that all ages will enjoy!


Overall Rating:


P.S.– My next read is Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis (I hope it’s better than the movie)!