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Around the Water Cooler

Posted on Saturday, June 24, 2017 at 10:00 am

The book is always better

Kali Bradford


PACT, the local children’s and teens’ theater group, will present “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” July 6-9.

For those who aren’t familiar, this play is based upon a book that belongs in a series of books called “The Chronicles of Narnia.”

“The Chronicles of Narnia” is seven fantasy novels by C.S. Lewis. Set in the fictional world of Narnia, a fantasy world of magic, mythical beasts and talking animals, the series tells the adventures of various children who play central roles in the unfolding history of that world.

The books span the entire history of Narnia, from its creation in The “Magician’s Nephew” to its eventual destruction in “The Last Battle.”

These books are known the world over and have been adapted several times for television, stage and movies, along with being translated into 47 languages.

So, it’s safe to say it’s been heard of, and more than a few people like it.

PACT is bringing the production to the South Jackson stage for children of all ages who want to get lost in the world of Narnia.

Personally, I think this is great. I read the books after the birth of my oldest daughter and fell in love with them. The world that Lewis created is amazing. I’m excited that they are promoting such a story in our community.

I talked with some of the cast recently, and when I asked if they had read the books, only two out of the five had. They all had seen the movie, though.

Don’t these young whippersnappers know that the book is always better?

While I was a little shocked, after some thought I realized this is pretty common these days. Movies are just easier and more convenient ways to digest a big series such as this one.

And with kids being so busy these days, when do they really have time to read such a lengthy series?

My old self quickly realized that while I wished they’d read the books, I totally understood why they hadn’t.

However, the old bookworm in me had to make a plea. I encouraged them all to read it if they had the smallest chance. They humored me by nodding their heads in agreement and I secretly hope they’ll do it. They’ll be glad they did.

It also got me thinking that while it’s great that books such as these are made into major motion pictures or television series, we need to offer our children some time, and take some time ourselves, to actually crack a book open and read.

I know in the rat race days of life it seems like the last thing we have time do.

However, if you can think back to a time you were able to dive in to a good book as a kid, teen or adult and be whisked off into another world, I’m sure you can remember how awesome that world was. How freeing it was to leave your hectic life for a while and travel to a world where anything is possible.

Why did we ever let such a feeling go away? Why don’t we share this with our children, or even with each other?

There are so many lessons to be learned through reading. “The Chronicles of Narnia” teach lessons of unconditional love, forgiveness, sacrifice, empathy and so much more. These are qualities that are so important in today’s society.

So, here’s my challenge. Pick an actual book and read it.

If you have little ones, pick one that you all can read and talk about with each other. Get lost in another world and learn a little something about yourself in the process. You’ll be glad you did.

Here’s some books to help you get started.

“The Giver” by Lois Lowry

“The Hobbit” by J.R.R. Tolkien

“Bridge to Terabithia” by Katherine Paterson

“The Hundred Dresses” by Eleanor Estes

“To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee

“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” by Ransom Riggs

“The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak

“Where the Wild Things Are” by Maurice Sendak

“Corduroy” by Don Freeman

“Harold and the Purple Crayon” by Crockett Johnson.