Literary Works — Fiction & Poetry
See also: Nonfiction
Warning: some of the summaries listed below contain spoilers.
- "The Dark Tower and Other Stories"
- Ed. Walter Hooper. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1977.
Contains four stories - "The Man Born Blind," "The Shoddy Lands," "Ministering Angels," "Forms of Things Unknown," - and two fragments of unfinished novels.
- "Dymer" [originally under the pseudonym of Clive Hamilton]
- London: Dent, 1926.
A Narrative poem, republished in 1950 under Lewis' name with a new Preface in which he summarized the subject of the poem as "the story of a man who, on some mysterious bride begets a monster: which monster, as soon as it has killed its father, becomes a god."
Included in "Narrative Poems," Ed. Walter Hooper (see below).
- "The Great Divorce"
- London: Geoffrey Bles, 1946; rpt. New York: Macmillan, 1977.
A dream (owing some ideas to Dante) in which the author visits Heaven and Hell. The question is not what they are like physically, but rather what it means to be in Hell or in Heaven.
- "The Horse and His Boy"
- London: Geoffry Bles, 1954; rpt. New York: Collier Books, 1970.
- Shasta, aided by the Tarkheena Aravis and two Talking Horses (Hwin and
Bree), helps save Archenland from invasion.
- "The Last Battle"
- London: The Bodley Head, 1956; rpt. New York: Collier Books, 1970
The final story: in the last days, a clever ape has constructed a false Aslan. Even after Jill Pole and Eustace Scrubb help Tirian to expose the deception, confusion reigns. The children die in a railway accident in England at the same time that Narnia ends. The children go on to find a new Narnia where "the inside is larger than the outside."
- "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe"
- London: Geoffrey Bles, 1950; rpt. New York: Collier Books, 1970.
Four English children (Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy) accidently discover a magic land that lies beyond and through an ordinary wardrobe. In this land, called Narnia, one of them, Edmund, betrays his siblings to the wicked White Witch, who has been holding all Narnia in thrall to winter. Only when the lion Aslan agrees to die at the witch's hand can the betrayal be forgiven and Spring come to Narnia.
- "The Magician's Nephew"
- London: The Bodley Head, 1955; rpt. New York: Collier Books, 1970.
Beginning in Victorian London, two children named Polly and Digory - whose Uncle Andrew is a magician - meet a Queen during their travels who wants magic for power. They are present at the creation of Narnia, when Aslan gives the gift of speech to the animals.
- "Narrative Poems"
- Ed. Walter Hooper. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1972.
Contains four poems: "Dymer" (with Lewis' 1950 Preface), "Launcelot," "The Nameless Isle," and "The Queen of Drum."
- "Out of the Silent Planet"
- London: John Lane, 1938; rpt. New York: Macmillan Paperbacks Editions,
First novel of the Space Trilogy. The main character, Ransom, is kidnapped and taken to Malacandra (Mars) as a kind of human sacrifice. Ransom escapes his captors and discovers the inhabitants are friendly. This voyage of philosophical adventure culminates in a trial scene between Ransom and his former captors.
- London: John Lane, 1943; rpt. New York: Macmillian Paperbacks Edition,
Second novel of the Space Trilogy. Ransom travels to Perelandra (Venus) where he must fight with the Devil (who has taken possession of Weston, the scientist from the first novel) for the soul of the Green Woman (the Eve of Venus). Ransom succeeds and thus prevents a repetition on Venus of the Earth's fate - the fall and loss of Eden.
- "The Pilgrim's Regress: An Allegorical Apology for Christianity, Reason and Romanticism"
- London: Dent, 1933; rpt. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1958
An allegorical account of a search for Joy and Truth; the main character, John, finds these where he least expected them - in a leap of (religious) faith.
- Ed. Walter Hooper. London: Geoffry Cles, 1964; rpt. New York: Harcourt
Brace Jovanovich, 1977.
A selection of the poems Lewis wrote during his life. Does not include poems from the first volume, "Spirits in Bondage" (see below).
- "Prince Caspian"
- London: Geoffry Bles, 1951; rpt. New York: Collier Books, 1970.
The four children return to a Narnia much later in time than their last visit. They meet the mouse Reepicheep and all assist Prince Caspian in defeating the Telmarines and bringing back the Old Things.
- "The Screwtape Letters"
- London: Geoffrey Bles, 1942; rpt., with "Screwtape Proposes a Toast" and
a new Preface. New York: Macmillan, 1962.
A moral fable about temptation, faith and Christianity, cast in the form of letters from the demon Screwtape to a lesser devil. Black is white, good is evil, and Hell is a bureaucracy. The related "Screwtape Proposes a Toast" is a satire on the American and British educational system, originally written for the Saturday Evening Post.
- "The Silver Chair"
- London: Geoffry Bles, 1953; rpt. New York: Collier Books, 1970.
Eustace Scrubb, with a friend named Jill Pole, is sent by Aslan to find the imprisoned Rilian - the true heir to the Narnian throne. Guided by Puddleglum, the children help Rilian to escape from Underland.
- "Spirits in Bondage: A Cycle of Lyrics" [originally under the pseudonym of Clive Hamilton]
- London: William Heinemann, 1919.
Lewis' first book publication.
- "That Hideous Strength: A Modern Fairy-Tale for Grown-Ups"
- London: John Lane, 1945; rpt. New York: Macmillan Paperbacks Edition,
The third novel of the Space Trilogy. Back on Earth, Ransom heads a loosely formed society, Logres, which opposes NICE, Lewis' satiric portrait of a modern power-mad bureaucracy. The NICE hopes to recall Merlin and use him in their plot to recondition society but succeeds only in constructing a modern Tower of Babel.
- "Till We Have Faces: A Myth Retold"
- London: Geoffry Bles, 1956; rpt. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1966.
The story of Cupid and Psyche (how Psyche, a beautiful mortal princess, is loved by Cupid [Eros], the god of love himself and then loses him through a lack of trust) told in the first-person by Orual, one of Psyche's two sisters. Orual learns that we cannot look the gods in the face until we have acquired faces - selves or souls.
- "The Voyage of the 'Dawn Treader'"
- London: Geoffry Bles, 1952; rpt. New York: Collier Books, 1970.
Edmund and Lucy join their cousin Eustace Clarence Scrubb ("he almost deserved it"), who becomes an unwilling voyager on a ship with King Caspian. Caspian (and Reepicheep) propose to sail to the World's End. They do. Aslan tells Edmund and Lucy that they are now too old for Narnia and must learn to see him - Aslan - in their own world.