This instalment of the Dalek Game is obviously for The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, and of course for Pauline Baynes’ illustrations which are Narnia for me, and whose White Witch (so elegant) is the one true Jadis, no matter how magnificent Tilda Swinton was.
Narnia infused my childhood – they are among the earliest books I remember reading (and being read, and reading aloud every year). For me they are the standard of wonder, the true quality of fairytale and fantasy – almost tangible, utterly ethereal, the best of the mundane and the least trammelled by the dullness of the world. Through the door and into the woods, through the desert and over the sea, forests and hunts, high romance and low loving adventure, “once upon a time” and all stories (they begin, after all, when Sherlock Holmes was living in Baker Street and the Bastables were digging for treasure in Lewisham Road), and always. Unlike The Lord of the Rings, which gained the third foothold in my heart, they were almost within reach, and unlike The Chronicles of Prydain (which I learned to love between Tolkien and Lewis) they never ended. They barely even began.
And here is a bonus drawing – originally for a card, with a touch of greenery added for current purposes: