C. S. Lewis: A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet Hardcover – 11 April 2013
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- Hardcover : 448 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1444745522
- ISBN-13 : 978-1444745528
- Product Dimensions : 16.2 x 23.9 x 3.8 cm
- Publisher : Hodder & Stoughton; 1st Edition (11 April 2013)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: 960,751 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer reviews:
Many of us thought we knew most of what there was to know about C. S. Lewis. Alister McGrath's new biography makes use of archives and other material that clarify, deepen and further explain the many sides of one of Christianity's most remarkable apologists. This is a penetrating and illuminating study. (N. T. Wright)
Alister McGrath's new biography of C. S. Lewis is excellent. It's filled with information based on extensive scholarship but is nonetheless extremely readable. It not only devotes great attention to the formation and character of Lewis the man, it offers incisive and balanced analyses of all his main literary works. Lewis's impact on me was profound and lasting, and Dr McGrath clearly explains why so many believers and Christians leaders today would say the same thing. (Timothy Keller)
A welcome addition to the biographical literature on C. S. Lewis, which includes several valuable new perspectives. McGrath's book will gain a permanent position in Lewis scholarship for his brilliant and, to my mind, undeniable re-dating of Lewis's conversion to Theism. How we all missed this for so long is astonishing! (Michael Ward, author of Planet Narnia)
Alister McGrath sheds new light on the incomparable C. S. Lewis. This is an important book. (Eric Metaxas, author of Bonhoeffer)
There have been plenty of biographies of Lewis - I once wrote one myself - but I do not think there has been a better one than Alister McGrath's. (A. N. Wilson The Daily Beast)
This biography is the one Lewis's admirers - especially those who, like him, believe that books are to be read and enjoyed - should prefer to all others. (Booklist, starred review)
If you're looking for a lively, general introduction to this multitalented thinker and writer, Alister McGrath's new biography is a good place to start. (The Washington Post)
Those of us who have been changed for ever by Lewis's introduction to vanished worlds must be grateful for this sympathetic and thorough account. (Melanie McDonagh The Evening Standard)
It weaves in a thoughtful, erudite lit-crit appraisal of the writings, plus an unabashed serenade for Lewis's theology (Peter Stanford The Guardian)
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McGrath tells the reader at the start that he read almost everything available on Lewis, both fiction and non-fiction, including a number of resources unavailable to previous biographers. So straight way the reader knows this is going to be a comprehensive, up to date, account of C.S. Lewis. And McGrath differs from other biographers in that he focuses on certain aspects of Lewis’ life, taking a more analytical approach, and in doing so doesn’t get entangled in minute, tiny details that can often bog down such biographies.
In short, McGrath covers the essential C.S. Lewis and in doing so gives the reader this wonderful book that seems unlikely to be surpassed for many years to come. Highly recommended.
I hope you find my review helpful.
I was very taken by the concept of forming a “treaty with reality” in order to keep the horror of war at bay.
Tolkien’s letters made reference to the life-draining pressure of Lewis’s later life events, and it was interesting and sad to learn about how these “realities” finally invaded the bubble he had created around himself at Oxford and the Kilns.
Recommended for anyone interested in the man behind the books.
I particularly appreciated McGraths meticulous care for chronology, helpfully insisting that, for example, we don't read later issues with Mrs Moore back into earlier parts of the relationship, or his excellent re-examination of the date of Lewis' conversion.
If you want to know more about the man behind Narnia then this is the place to turn.
This account I found fascinating and sets out the background and is one of the most open about his domestic arrangements. As you read C S Lewis's life story it is intriguing that despite all his erudition and ability to debate topics he was not a saint and had his flaws.
If you are interested in Lewis, whether because of his Narnia books, his science fiction, his theology or his english literature - then this is a book for you.
I was particularly impressed with the understanding it gave me of CS Lewis's view of the meaning and purpose of literature - I had always wondered why anyone would study the legends and myths of countries - his explanation was that it gives us hints of truth and meaning that everyone searches for, kinds of allegories This was a relief and an insight.
that made me curious about ancient myths etc that I had not read because I couldn't see value in this - for example, watching the Matrix I could see such a clear picture of how realities could exist in the same plane, without being aware of the existence of others, clear parallels with the existence of spiritual life alongside human life - a way of illuminating a real truth. The author of this biography is also an excellent theologian whose many other works are illuminating of many aspects of the Christian faith
I bought several copies to share with others and look forward to Alister's next literary or theological project