The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C. S. Lewis

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C. S. Lewis is an Odyssey-like sea quest to find 7 lords of Narnia and seek Aslan’s land. Check it out!

Book

The book tells the story of King Caspian’s journey through the Eastern Seas.
He wants to find the seven lost lords of Narnia and seek out Aslan’s land.

This story was part three of C. S. Lewis’s Narnia stories, published, after “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” (1950) and “Prince Caspian” (1951).

(read the author’s mini-bio)

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader Book Cover The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
Chronicles of Narnia
C. S. Lewis
Fantasy, Children
HarperCollins
Reprint edition (July 1994)
Kindle, Hardcover, Paperback, Audio
256
Chris Van Allsburg (Illustrator)
8 and up


In the saga timeline, "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader" is the fifth story, since the episodes of The Magician's Nephew and The Horse and His Boy also precede the story of Caspian's journey.

 

Story Development

(read about Dramatic Structure Diagrams in this article)

Act 1

The story begins when Edmund and Lucy Pevensie were staying with their cousin Eustace Scrubb.

Trigger

Edmund, Lucy, and Eustace are taken into Narnia world being pulled into a picture of a ship at sea.

 

Act 2

spoilers

The three kids land in the water near the pictured craft and are taken aboard. The ship is the Dawn Treader, and belongs to Caspian X, King of Narnia, who the Pevensie children helped gain the throne from his uncle, Miraz.

Caspian is trying to find the seven lost Lords of Narnia. Reepicheep is also on the ship, and he is trying to find Aslan’s country beyond the seas.

Their first stop is in Lone Islands, where slave trade flourishes, despite Narnian laws declaring that it is prohibited. A slave trader captures Caspian, Edmund, Lucy, Eustace and Reepicheep and a man buys Caspian before they reach the slave market. This man is the first Lord they were looking for, Lord Bern. He moved to the island and married a local woman after being banished from Narnia by Miraz. After Caspian revealing who he was. Bern acknowledges Caspian as King.
Caspian asks Bern regarding Governor Gumpas. Bern reveals that, out loud, the Governor recognizes the King of Narnia as his superior, but, in practice, he would more likely be threatening to Caspian

and Caspian replaces Gumpas, the current governor, with Lord Bern. (mid 4)
At their second stop, the group settles at a different island for a while.
Eustace leaves the group to avoid to work, and hides in a dead dragon’s cave when it starts to rain.

The cave is full of gold and jewels, and Eustace gets greedy. He fills his pockets with the treasure. Waiting for the rain to stop he sleeps and he is mutated into a dragon.

While he is a dragon, he figures out how bad his behavior was and uses his strength to make amends.
Aslan changes Eustace back into a boy, now much nicer than before. Caspian recognizes one of the jewels Eustace had taken as a bracelet belonging to the second Lord, Lord Octesian. They think that the dragon killed Octesian, or Octesian was the dragon himself.
Next, they stop at Burnt Island and then at Deathwater Island, where they find another missing Lord, Lord Restimar, transformed into a statue of gold at the bottom of a pool of water that turns everything immersed in it into gold.

Next stop is at Duffers’ Island (11) and then at the Dark Island, this island being permanently hidden in darkness, and where the dreams come true. On this island, they rescue Lord Rhoop.

 

Mid-Point

Finally, they reach the Island of the Star, where they find the last three Lords in an enchanted sleep. A fallen star named Ramandu, who lives on the island, tells them that to break the spell they have to sail to the edge of the world and they have to leave one member of the crew behind.
When sailing towards the edge of the world, they pass into an area where merpeople dwell and the waters are sweet.
The waters become so shallow that the ship cannot continue, and Caspian wants to leave the ship and go in an adventure with Reepicheep.

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CLIMAX

spoilers

After an argument, the crew does not allow that.

Aslan instructs Caspian saying that only Lucy, Edmund, Eustace and Reepicheep should proceed in the boat.

[collapse]

Act 4

spoilers

Fulfilling Ramandu’s tale, Reepicheep goes into a waterfall and disappear, probably reaching Aslan’s country. Edmund, Eustace and Lucy find a lamb, who transform into Aslan and tells them that Edmund and Lucy shall not return to Narnia, and sends the children home, where everyone notice how Eustace has changed.

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The main characters in this book are Edmund and Lucy Pevensie, Caspian X, Reepicheep and Eustace Scrubb, the character that changes.

 

All “Chronicles of Narnia” books are must-reads and this one is no exception.

 

We recommend the book for kidsteenagers, and fresh-young-minded adults.

4 thoughts on “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C. S. Lewis

  • 2016-09-15 at 12:09 pm
    Permalink

    I remember reading these books when I was in grade school and loved them. My kids now are required to bring reading books to school and I thought what better books to get them than the ones from this classic series.

    I really appreciated how you broke down the story and even how you used the spoiler alert sections. For me it was a nice quick visit to an old story I love. Hopefully my kids will find the same enjoyment as I did!

    Reply
    • 2016-09-19 at 9:58 am
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      Hello, James,

      I think you made an excellent choice. Thanks for sharing your experience. Cheers!

      Reply
  • 2016-10-22 at 9:15 pm
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    Oh man I love this book! My dad used to read it to me and my brother and sister when we were young. I always loved how they had a mini adventure on each island that they stopped on. And who doesn’t absolutely love Reepicheep? Am I right?!

    I also watched the movie. I enjoyed it, but they added some stuff to adapt it more for a movie audience ( I guess) and I just wasn’t really feeling that version.

    The character development of Eustace is also pretty cool. At first you can’t stand him, but you really start to like him as he begins to mature due to his own personal adventure.

    Great review!

    Reply
    • 2016-10-25 at 9:08 am
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      Hello, Nick,

      Agreed! I see you have a keen eye for stories. Thanks for sharing your opinion and experience. Cheers!

      Reply

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