I cannot say enough good about this book. I have to confess that this was my first time reading the entirety of the book. It is a classic that has been on my “to-read” list for years. I wish now, that I had experienced this treasure (as it is!) long ago. In any case, it is certainly better later than never.
I read this as a read-aloud with my daughter. I highly recommend this version of the book, as it has margins containing the scriptures he refers to throughout the book. Apparently these are from his original notes. It was a lovely addition to the book, and my daughter and I would often stop to discuss the scriptures that were alluded to. Sometimes it did not refer to a specific verse, but to biblical principles, which also opened up for wonderful conversation and opportunity to learn valuable lessons from the word of God.
The book is nothing short of a masterpiece. I love the way an allegory brings words to life, enabling the reader to experience the story vicariously through the characters.
In order to get the most out of this book, and understand the story, one will need to know their bible relatively well. It is hard to recommend an age group, but there has to be a higher maturity level and an understanding and ability to apply the word of God. Also, I an understanding of allegorical work in general is recommended.
The book is very clear in presenting the gospel, as well as encouraging a purpose driven life. He challenges many aspects of the christian life, and encourages complete surrender, without compromise, to biblical living. And all this through an engaging, edge of the seat, thrilling allegorical drama.