5 Fantasy Stories I Never Recovered from Reading

 

I think everyone should read them

 

A good story, I heard recently, is like a Trojan horse. It seems innocent. It sneaks in past your defenses. Then it lets loose life wrecking power. (It was the pastor of my church, Shane Farmer who said this, speaking about parables. Check out his sermons at CHCC.org)

Good fiction, especially good fantasy can tell the truth with life wrecking power. Don’t dare to read these unless you are willing to come out of the experience different. Here are my favorite stories that tell the truth.

“A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” – C.S. Lewis

Many of the books on this fantasy stories list are written for young readers, but the truth in them can never be outgrown. I loved these stories when I was young, but I love them more now. They make good gifts, they are good books to read aloud in a classroom or snuggled up with your kids on cold winter evenings. The interesting thing is, they are written in layers. They can be enjoyed as just a good story, or you can dig deeper and release the power of truth in them. Then the deeper magic begins to happen, as C.S. Lewis would say.

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

“Now the trouble about trying to make yourself stupider than you really are is that you very often succeed.” ― C.S. Lewis, The Magician’s Nephew

“…some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again…”(C.S. Lewis, from the dedication)

Narnia

These classic fantasy stories were my constant companions for several years when I was a preteen. I read them so many times that I nearly memorized them. They showed me what God is like. I think I fell in love with God by reading Narnia. I still love the Narnia stories. Even now I discover truth through the symbolism buried deep in these stories. I’ve never fallen back out of love with either God or Narnia.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

 

“God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things that are mighty” (quoted from the Bible on p. 82)

Best Fantasy Stories

This is one of the most hopeful stories I’ve ever read. I relate to the insecure young girl who seems to have many weaknesses and few strengths. I love that through much struggle she learns that it is her faults and flaws that can beat back the darkness. This is one of the most imaginative and entertaining stories I’ve ever read, but also one of the most true.

The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald

 

“Seeing is not believing—it is only seeing.” (George MacDonald)

classic fantasy stories

C.S. Lewis felt about George MacDonald the way I feel about C.S. Lewis, he is a wise guide and a masterful thinker. In this story the princess is led to both love and adventure by following a golden thread. MacDonald leads us to delightful places if we are willing to follow the thread of golden truth he weaves through the story.

The Lord of the Rings by J.R. Tolkien

“Not all those who wander are lost.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

“Here are beauties which pierce like swords or burn like cold iron. Here is a book which will break your heart.” [on Lord of the Rings]” — C.S. Lewis

 

must read stories

 

Everybody knows the Lord of the Rings. If you don’t, you should. Period.

Hinds Feet on High Places

 

“The Shepherd laughed too. “I love doing preposterous things,” he replied. “Why, I don’t know anything more exhilarating and delightful than turning weakness into strength, and fear into faith, and that which has been marred into perfection. If there is one thing more than another which I should enjoy doing at this moment it is turning a jellyfish into a mountain goat. That is my special work,” he added with the light of a great joy in his face. “Transforming things —to take Much-Afraid, for instance, and to transform her into—“ He broke off and then went on laughingly. “Well, we shall see later on what she finds herself transformed into.”
Hannah Hurnard, Hinds Feet on High Places

best allegory

Little Much-Afraid travels to the high places with the help of her constant companions Sorrow and Suffering. So much of Much-Afraid’s story is my story, with the welcome addition of a happy ending. Most likely it is also your story. If you ever need a new perspective on your journey and a peek at your happily-ever-after read it.

The good news is that each of these authors wrote many other books. Start by reading these but you won’t want to stop there.

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One Response to 5 Fantasy Stories I Never Recovered from Reading

  1. Katie Sturm November 27, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

    I think it is time to re-read a few of these. 🙂

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