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That Hideous Strength (The Cosmic Trilogy) [Paperback]

C. S. Lewis
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
RRP: 10.99
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Book Description

5 Dec 2005 The Cosmic Trilogy (Book 3)

The third novel in the science-fiction trilogy by C.S. Lewis. This final story is set on Earth, and tells of a terrifying conspiracy against humanity.

The story surrounds Mark and Jane Studdock, a newly married couple. Mark is a Sociologist who is enticed to join an organisation called N.I.C.E. which aims to control all human life. His wife, meanwhile, has bizarre prophetic dreams about a decapitated scientist, Alcasan. As Mark is drawn inextricably into the sinister organisation, he discovers the truth of his wife’s dreams when he meets the literal head of Alcasan which is being kept alive by infusions of blood.

Jane seeks help concerning her dreams at a community called St Anne’s, where she meets their leader – Dr Ransom (the main character of the previous two titles in the trilogy). The story ends in a final spectacular scene at the N.I.C.E. headquarters where Merlin appears to confront the powers of Hell.


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That Hideous Strength (The Cosmic Trilogy) + Perelandra (The Cosmic Trilogy) + Out of the Silent Planet (The Cosmic Trilogy)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (5 Dec 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007157177
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007157174
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 186,127 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

CLIVE STAPLES LEWIS (1898-1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day. He was a fellow and tutor in English Literature at Oxford University until 1954 when he was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance English at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement. He wrote more than thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers every year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include Mere Christianity, Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the universally acknowledged classics, the Chronicles of Narnia. To date, the Narnia books have sold over 100 million copies and been transformed into three major motion pictures.


Product Description

Review

‘An extravagant mingling of dream and realism… excellent and thrilling reading’ Daily Telegraph

From the Back Cover

She had begun by dreaming simply of a face. Its expression was frightening because it was frightened. The face belonged to a man who was sitting hunched up in one corner of a little square room with white-washed walls – waiting, she thought, for those who had him in their power to come in and do something horrible to him. At last the door was opened…She could not make out what the visitor was proposing to him, but she did discover that the prisoner was under sentence of death. Whatever the visitor was offering him was something that frightened him more than that. The visitor, still smiling his cold smile, unscrewed the prisoner's head and took it away. Then all became confused.

The third novel in C.S. Lewis's classic sci-fi trilogy begins with Jane Studdock's horrific nightmare. The next morning she sees the same face in a newspaper – a brilliant French scientist guillotined for poisoning his wife. Jane has the growing feeling that she is being warned of something real and sinister. Her husband, Mark, meanwhile, is drawn into the National Institute for Co -ordinated Experiments, which is engaged in a plan to control human life.

'An extravagant mingling of dream and realism…excellent and thrilling reading'
DAILY TELEGRAPH

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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"MATRIMONY was ordained, thirdly," said Jane Studdock to herself, "for the mutual society, help, and comfort that the one ought to have of the other." Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of The Cosmic Trilogy 9 Mar 2000
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book is often unfairly maligned as being the 'weakest' of the three books in the science fiction trilogy. In my humble opinion it is the best. Superlatives will have to suffice: a plethora of superbly sketched characters; a bizarre plot deftly handled with the separate elements woven together nicely at the end; moments of true horror and terror; I could go on and on but - read this book! The influence of Charles Williams' thrillers on 'That Hideous Strength' have been noted before now. In my opinion they are eclipsed by this, a definate curates' egg in English Literature.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Move Over, Huxley and Orwell. 6 May 1998
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Lewis' apocolyptic vision of where mankind is headed hits far closer to the mark than the more widely read visions such as Brave New World and 1984. This is because Lewis recognizes that the evil lies not in technology or even politics but in the human heart.
Lewis also shows a deeper understanding of how society functions -- as an investigative researcher I can vouch for the accuracy of his portrayal of how nefarious organizations manipulate the press, for example. He grasps what other writers never even seem to comprehend -- that it is the small choices made daily that lead down the path to Hell.
As philosophy, as social commentary, or as a rolicking good story, That Hideous Strength is a compelling read.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More than you might think 16 April 2008
By Mark Grindell VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
This book is curious, at the very least because at the time it was published there was a mild fuss over the possibility that Lewis was referring to parallel organizations and individuals quite close to hand. I am aware of at least two communities of Christians who bear an astonishing resemblance to those in the book; and this intrigues me greatly. Were those communities real distant cousins of St Annes?

...and whether or not that is true, his ability to puts words and music to some of the most vexing characters you may ever meet is extraordinary. I never get tired, for instance, of Lewis's depiction of Wither, and Frost is even more strange; both are characteristically mundane and quite terrifying. Close to central to the book' focus is the idea that any individual can unwisely decouple themselves from the warmth and happiness that accompanies the human experience in exchange for knowledge and power. In this case, obviously, you would say "forbidden knowledge and power", but by examining this in extremis, we can read this both as entertainment, and as admonition for lesser and more common problems in our own cosmos.

Well, to more detail. Lewis's story here is/was tremendously ahead of it's time - dreams of a hideous experiment, ostensibly concerning rehabilitation engineering (which is the proper term) whose consequences spill out far further into destructive metaphysics and politics, would work well in the 21st century in the hands of any of the contemporary directors (though I'm not sure they would interpret the main content of the book so very well), but regardless, there is here an acute pace and imminent feeling of decision and action that overbears nicely into the current frame; it's not really suitable for children but teenagers will lap it up.

Arthur? Merlin?
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
It seems that people either like That Hideous Strength the best or least of the Space Trilogy. I think the reason is that That Hideous Strength is very different than the other two books. It took me a couple of chapters to realize that this book was not going where Perelandra and Out of the Silent Planet went, but when I realized that I could enjoy the book on its own merits. In fact, this is my favorite book in the trilogy. Although a Christian theme runs throughout the trilogy, when it is presented in That Hideous Strength it becomes more accessible. The evil in the book could and does happen. The basic good in the book is no less extraordinary (with certain exceptions). The adventures of Ransom on other planets in the first two books of the trilogy were to prepare him for the battle on Earth in That Hideous Strenth. An interesting phenomenon of this book for me was that when I was reading about Mark and the N.I.C. E. I longed for the story to switch to Jane and the group at St. Anne's. The people at N.I.C.E. were so disagreeable and petty and backstabbing that it made me realize what C. S. Lewis was saying about the nature of evil (or the devil). This book can be read for its story alone, but it is much more rewarding if you think about the ideas and beliefs present as well.
Even if you are not religious or a christian the book can inspire you to think about what you believe in.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fascinating conclusion to the space trilogy 24 April 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This novel is a wonderful conclusion to CS Lewis' space trilogy, which began with Out of the Silent Planet and Perelandra (also published as Voyage to Venus). I use the word 'wonderful' in it's fullest original meaning i.e. full of wonder.
That Hideous Strenght was one of the first SF books I bought and is at least in part responsible for the five crammed bookcases which now house my collection.
Lewis has blended classical, Arthurian, medieval legend and allegory for the climax to the story of Ransome.
The book is suffused throughout with Lewis' Christian beliefs and philosophy but don't let that put you off - as an agnostic bordering on atheist myself I can assure you that it doesn't detract from the book.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The Culmination of the 'Perelandra' trilogy
An excellent read - plot, characterisation and writing skill are all evident in this novel. It carries a fictional working-out of themes C S Lewis explores in his famous extended... Read more
Published 2 months ago by K. Gajewski
4.0 out of 5 stars The last and most powerful of the cosmic trilogy
Despite the talking bear this is not as charming as Out of the Silent Planet but has a stronger message. Read more
Published 6 months ago by carol carlile
3.0 out of 5 stars That hideous Strength
This was the hardest of the trilogy to read, I bought it as a gift for my Dad and he also preferred the other two books
Published 9 months ago by joh
5.0 out of 5 stars best of the triology
RECEIVED FREE COPY FROM LIBRARY

A smart writer, Lewis saved the best for last in his space and time triology. Read more
Published 14 months ago by likes good books, music, movies
5.0 out of 5 stars That Hideous Strength
I first read this many years ago, I had forgotten just how creepy it is at times. This is totally different to the other two in the trilogy and by far the best.
Published 15 months ago by K. Taylor
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite of the Space Trilogy
[Throughout the years, I have written a number of reviews that have never been published online on Amazon. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Mike London
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite of the Space Trilogy, and argueably the first fan fiction...
[Throughout the years, I have written a number of reviews that have never been published online on Amazon. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Mike London
4.0 out of 5 stars My favorite of the Space Trilogy, and argueably the first fan fiction...
THS is the third installment in his Space Trilogy. For those who have read the previous two novels (though this is self-contained enough to read as a stand-alone work), they will... Read more
Published 18 months ago by Mike London
4.0 out of 5 stars A tall story about devilry
The third volume in CS Lewis' Cosmic Trilogy is set on Earth. In the preface, Lewis describes it as a "fairy-tale" and as a "tall story about devilry". Read more
Published 22 months ago by Mr. J. Hastings
1.0 out of 5 stars Audiobook review (book would rate 5 stars)
Please note that this is not a review of the book, which I would award 5 stars. Unfortunately Amazon combine results for book and audio.

If the works of C.S. Read more
Published 23 months ago by Lodekka
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