Christian Book Previews Home
Christian Book Previews
Book Jacket

Trade Paperback
297 pages
Jul 2005
Harvest House Publishers

Harry Potter, Narnia, and The Lord of the Rings: What You Need to Know About Fantasy Books and Movies

by Richard Abanes

Review  |   Author Bio  |  Read an Excerpt


Harry Potter, Narnia, and the Lord of the Rings by Richard Abanes is a dissection of three of the greatest fantasy phenomena around today. Is fantasy harmful? Can we learn from it? Are there different types? How does fantasy affect us?

These are just a few of the questions Abanes answers in his informative book. As a mildly interested reader and watcher of fantasy, this book surprised me as it disclosed the impact that reading or observing fantasy can have on a person--especially a child or teenager. Yet parents are often very lax in supervising what their children read or watch, resulting in a decline in morals as well as an increasing interest in the occult.

Abanes compares the three above-named fantasies to show what each is preaching or teaching. With the Narnia and Lord of the Rings series, he shows how Christian values and morals can be taught through the fantasy medium.

With Harry Potter, he raises a few questions. Some in the Christian arena have said it teaches Christian morals. Abanes disputes this by asking: Do we have a clear-cut example of good and bad in Harry Potter? How can we call the hero "good" and yet watch Harry lie, cheat, and steal? What about all the occult spells and paraphernalia explored in the books?

In the last chapters, he shows how television and movies are delving more and more into the occult, including horror movies and even prime-time weekly television programs. "Children are big imitators," asserts Abanes. Many of the crimes being perpetrated today--especially by children and teenagers--are copycats of scenes watched in movies or television.

Harry Potter, Narnia, and The Lord of the Rings is enlightening while remaining highly readable. Abanes challenges Christian authors and pastors in a friendly way, but calls us all to be discerning of what we put before our children and grandchildren. -- Linda Demorest, Christian Book

Book Jacket:

Award–winning journalist Richard Abanes clears away the confusion many readers experience over fantasy books and films. He delves into the differences between various forms of fantasy and digs out answers needed by every parent, youth worker, teacher, and student.

The stories of Tolkien, Lewis, and Rowling—and films based on them—have touched millions of lives. How are these authors similar...and different? Where do they fit into today’s ever–growing desire for the mystery and magic fantasy provides? Abanes—himself a fantasy and science–fiction fan—helps shed light on this form of entertainment and its effects on today’s youth.

Readers will come away thoroughly equipped to differentiate between stories and films that are harmless, even inspiring—and those containing spiritual dangers.