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Paths in the Snow

A literary journey through The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

Jem Bloomfield

978 1 915412 30 0
Hardback |256 pp |198 x 126 mm
Price: £16.99

'This is a book that will delight all Narnians. Jem Bloomfield leads us on a charming yet erudite ramble through the land of Narnia, pointing out many of the literary and theological references Lewis wove consciously or unconsciously into his tale ... I read the book in one huge gulp and enjoyed every page of it.’

Katherine Langrish, author of From Spare Oom to War Drobe: Travels in Narnia with my Nine Year-Old Self


‘Jem Bloomfield provides an insightful and interesting exploration of scriptural and literary echoes in the first Chronicle of Narnia. Always intelligent, often intriguing, and at times an arresting read.’

Michael Ward, University of Oxford, author of Planet Narnia: The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of C.S. Lewis


‘This is a rich and rewarding book, an indispensable guide for anyone wanting to gain a deeper understanding of C. S. Lewis’ much-loved novel.'

Eleanor Parker, Lecturer in Medieval English Literature, Brasenose College, Oxford

A superbly rich and engrossing exploration of C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Paths in the Snow traces the literary allusions and echoes to be found in this beloved novel, drawing the reader deeper into the magic and meaning of Narnia.

From Dante to The Wind in the Willows, and from medieval dream poetry to Dorothy L. Sayers, Paths in the Snow uncovers the literary connections which criss-cross Narnia. Stories, myth and literature played a central role in Lewis’ personal life and religious imagination: he was a professor of literature who came back to faith by seeing the Christian story as a “true myth” created by God. Untangling the fascinating network of literary allusions and sources in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe helps to bring Lewis’ vision into focus.

This study also examines the time in which the first Narnia book was written, shedding light on its historical and cultural context, and how these shaped its meaning for its first readers. Paths in the Snow reveals why the Pevensie children are always shaking hands with each other and what a wartime recipe for whalemeat fritters can tell us about Narnian food. The book proceeds chapter by chapter through The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, making it ideal for reading groups or study sessions. It also provides an opportunity for readers to branch off into their own journey through the literary and theological sources which stocked Lewis’ mind.

The perfect gift for any Narnian, and a valuable resource for groups, Paths in the Snow will appeal to all fans of C.S. Lewis’ work, and enable anyone to stand at the wardrobe door, and go further in.

Jem Bloomfield is assistant professor of literature at the University of Nottingham, and a Reader in the Church of England. He is the author of Words of Power: Reading Shakespeare and the Bible (Lutterworth, 2016), Shakespeare and the Psalms Mystery (Erewash, 2018) and Witchcraft and Paganism in Midcentury Women’s Detective Fiction (Cambridge, 2022). He teaches on C.S. Lewis at undergraduate and postgraduate level, as well as running retreats and study days based around Narnia. He runs a weekly extra-curricular session for his university students, which he insists is the C.S. Lewis Reading Group, but the students insist it’s Narnia Club and they’re making badges to prove it.
ISBNs: 9781915412300 978-1-915412-30-0 Title: paths in the snow