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on 2 December 2015
I am a big fan of many of CS Lewis' apologetic and non-fiction work, but I found this book a little tiring. To give him credit he did warn near the beginning of the book that much of the book would be about his childhood. Whilst I found it a bit interesting, I found it also rather dull and long winded. I was more interested to hear his story on how his religious views evolved, and whilst he does go over this, it is very infrequent and most of the book is seemingly unrelated stories. He didn't give enough detail on his religious views in my opinion and how and why they changed, probably less than 20% of the book mentioned it, and that was what I was really interested in.
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on 22 April 2017
I have read it before and as a practising Christian I found it very undestandable. It is an honest collection of thoughts and debate. I bought it to give to a friend to read who as a practicing Atheist He was finding in his later years that he coul not get rid of the feeling that there was a God, feelings he had not had through his teen age years, his marriage and latter retirement from his carreer as a judge. I thought the book would compliment his thinking.
Norman
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on 6 March 2017
I love the Narnia books and the Cosmic Trilogy but I found this a difficult read. He was addressing someone much brighter and we'll read than me. I wish I had understood more.
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on 19 February 2011
Surprised by Joy is a sort of autobiography of the famous writer C S Lewis, the author of the famous Narnia childrens books. A Latin and Greek scholar, he volunteered for service as an Officer in the trenches of the Great War. Although he had a Christian upbringing, as a school boy he lost his faith and became an Athiest. A number of events in his life however, brought him to believe that the Universe was created by an intelligence beyond human understanding. He still had trouble with the Christian concept that Jesus of Nazareth was both man, and at the same time as Christ God also. By 1929, his own research had convinced him that Christ was both man and God and Lewis became a Christian. Anyone who is not convinced that God exists, but at the same time knows the impossibility of proving the non-existance of God, or indeed anything, will find the story of how this highly intelligent man moved from Athiest to believer very interesting. Lewis became one of the most influential Christian writers of the 20th Century.
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on 15 August 2013
I still hold that "The Screwtape Letters" and "The Great Divorce" are C;S; Lewis' best works, but "Surprised By Joy" is very good. Not quite an autobiography, it traces the author's personal journey from his earliest years towards the goal of his life, and has many startling insights about his first perceptions of that goal and what he ultimately found to be its true nature. The book confirms my worst perceptions of British public schools of the early 20th century, and has much inspired and inspiring logic. The discussions of the nature of Joy are very thought-provoking. The books by other authors that Lewis mentions along the way would make a glorious reading list.
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on 9 December 2017
CS Lewis never disappoints; outstanding use of the English language as he takes you through meaningful, touching, humbling, descriptions of his life and beliefs. What a man!
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on 7 November 2016
This book is full of spelling mistakes, its presentation (tiny font, paragraphs starting and finishing in the wrong place, awful content list) is simply appalling. It is too awful to give as a present. It does not look like a proper book. I love CS Lewis and I will buy a different copy of it but will try to make sure it is not printed by Amazon as this item was.
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on 14 January 2014
This is deserved of a erudite and considered critique rather than the one liner I have time for. However this book is potentially life changing, or at the very least mind changing. As with other titles from Lewis it is difficult to remain unaffected, because he speaks so plainly and honestly about his weaknesses and foibles. The purely humanist is interwoven with the spiritual so adeptly that it leaves one susceptible to the immense notion he is expounding. I suspect the subject matter is uncomfortable to the christian and the atheist alike. It is rare that religion is dealt with this intelligently and without the usual sentimentalism and guff.
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on 25 November 2017
Great insight into C S Lewis and an easy read
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on 14 April 2018
Surprised by the contents — challenging ideas.
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