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What was Lewis's best book?

The man. The myth.

What is your favourite Lewis book?

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
14
12%
The Magician's Nephew/The Horse and His Boy
5
4%
Prince Caspian/The Silver Chair
0
No votes
The Last Battle
9
8%
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
4
3%
Out of the Silent Planet
1
1%
Perelandra
8
7%
That Hideous Strength
4
3%
Till We Have Faces
25
21%
The Great Divorce
15
13%
The Screwtape Letters
10
8%
The Problem of Pain
3
3%
Mere Christianity
14
12%
A Grief Observed
3
3%
Surprised by Joy
2
2%
Letters to Malcolm
0
No votes
Allegory of Love
0
No votes
A Preface to Paradise Lost
0
No votes
Other
2
2%
 
Total votes : 119

Postby Areida » 19 Oct 2006, 01:39

Haha, too true.

I voted Till We Have Faces. It's an astounding, poignant piece of literature.
"You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself." ~C.S. Lewis

"Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all." ~Dale Carnegie
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Postby Larry W. » 19 Oct 2006, 12:01

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader was my choice. I always loved its magical sea voyage. After that The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and then The Great Divorce. It's hard to pick a favorite since I love all of Lewis' books. I own almost all of them except The Dark Tower, A Preface to Paradised Lost, and couple of others. Anyone else here own the Narnia series in hardcover with Pauline Baynes' illustrations? I have the Harper Collins edition with black and white pictures, and the volumes are numbered in chronological order. The color illustrated edition is very beautiful, but it is expensive in hardcover.

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About the problem of pain and other books not so read...

Postby Friend » 29 Oct 2006, 07:50

I am just started reading Lewis books and I find I love them all! I was very much surprised to see how few people comment about books like The Problem of Pain and The Four Loves. I think that they are great books and as far as a I see from the comments many have not read them.

I think that if we are going to vote on the best Lewis book we should at least divide fiction and non-fiction, it is just too hard to choose when he wrote about so many topics and in such different ways.
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Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » 30 Oct 2006, 13:44

I have to say I found Suprised by Joy to be a total bore (and I'm not talking about pig).
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Postby The Bigsleep J » 30 Oct 2006, 13:52

Surprised by Joy wasn't boring for me, just underwhelming. I expected a more powerful ending or at least a more pleasing one. He spends a lot of time talking about how he ceased to believe in God and then skims over how he came back. Or at least that's what I felt. I would have liked more detail on the subject. :toothy-grin:
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Postby Monica » 30 Oct 2006, 14:14

Warrior 4 Jesus
I have to say I found Suprised by Joy to be a total bore (and I'm not talking about pig).


Poor Warrior4Jesus. After that 'ugh' comment, he feels he has to explain his choice of words.

I promise I won't ask if by "a total bore" you meant Surprised by Joy was dull, or that it dug a hole deep into your soul. :-)
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Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » 30 Oct 2006, 23:01

Sorry, I didn't think non-British/Aussie people would know what I meant (so I put in a pun). Not that it made it any easier.

Don't get me wrong, Surprised By Joy had some great parts, but much of it was talking about literature pieces I've never heard about, or even cared about.
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Postby Pete » 17 Dec 2006, 08:56

Warrior, I'm surprised you not only found Surprised By Joy boring but also Till We Have Faces. It makes me wonder, did you just read them because you had to read them, say for school or something? Or just because you were bored and wanted something to pass the time? :??: The reason I ask is because I think you may be missing the specialness of both books, and particularly TWHF - as my own experience (after initially finding it boring also) was that it was not only brilliant but extremely thought provoking.

May I challenge you to re-read it with no preconceived ideas as to how boring or interesting it is. :read:
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Postby girlfreddy » 03 Jan 2007, 21:54

For me, it was "A Grief Observed". I had read many of his books before and I found this one to be as bare and uncluttered as none I have ever read before nor since. I love Lewis as an author; he is my favorite. Clear, concise, to the point, but "A Grief Observed" was stripped-to-the-bones C.S. Lewis. It showed me who he really was; sometimes as lost and vulnerable and weak as I. This book made him real to me.

It is also the most painful book I have ever read, for all the same reasons.
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Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » 08 Jan 2007, 02:18

Sorry for the late reply.

No, I didn't have to read Till We Had Faces or Surprised by Joy for school or anything, I read them because I enjoy Lewis' books and thought I would enjoy them. I was greatly disappointed. But of all the books of his I've read these are the only ones I didn't enjoy.
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Postby Pete » 08 Jan 2007, 09:41

Warrior 4 Jesus wrote:Sorry for the late reply.

No, I didn't have to read Till We Had Faces or Surprised by Joy for school or anything, I read them because I enjoy Lewis' books and thought I would enjoy them. I was greatly disappointed. But of all the books of his I've read these are the only ones I didn't enjoy.


Fair enough. I'm glad you didn't read them because you had to read them and that such reasons for reading them weren't the cause of your disappointment in them. I won't deny however, that to me, that makes it all the more surprising to me that you didn't like them...but then again, I suppose that's part of having different tastes and all that, so, I suppose I shouldn't be too surprised that you found them disappointing. :wink:
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Favorite Book

Postby Bnayqyama » 23 Feb 2007, 06:17

I chose Mere Christianity because of Book Four, which I believe is the clearest statement of the purpose of human life, viewed from a Christian perspective.

Great Divorce and Horse and His Boy are close seconds. GD portrays the plight of the human being well, the inability to let go of hell, of hellishness. HHB is my favorite story; I think it is interesting that the Parent Trap is a movie I can watch over-and-over without losing interest. There is something about the separated twin that appeals. I recall Lewis' thoughts on the value of myths.
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Re: Favorite Book

Postby Stanley Anderson » 23 Feb 2007, 15:19

Bnayqyama wrote:HHB is my favorite story; I think it is interesting that the Parent Trap is a movie I can watch over-and-over without losing interest.


Old or new one (or both)? My wife was reluctant to see the remake when it first came out years ago since the original was a childhood favourite of hers, but we were very pleased with the remake and, like you, can watch it over and over.

There is something about the separated twin that appeals.


I wonder if there is something of that appeal in Till We Have Faces? One could say that Orual and Psyche are sort of separated twins (or even, as has been pointed out here before, perhaps Orual, Psyche, and Redival as separated triplets).

I've mentioned in these forums before one of my theories about Lewis' tendency in many of his works to have this sort of "mirror" reflection aspect. We see it of course in what I call the "chessboard view" of That Hideous Strength where very many people, places, things, events and situations have their contrasting or parallel counterparts in the St. Annes/NICE arenas like pieces on a chessboard. But we also see it in Ransom himself in Out of the Silent Planet where he is wandering by himself and begins to see himself as two people (in this case it is the modern man being taken over by the medieval man as one of the primary themes of the book in my view). And there is some of that "twin" aspect in the Ransom/Unman characters talking to the Green Lady in Perelandra (although with the "evil twin" aspect emphasized to the extreme here:-).

Well, I could go on and on...
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Postby Bnayqyama » 25 Feb 2007, 21:57

Both old and new Parent Trap movies are joys. I appreciate clean and relatively innocent movies that can even appeal to my 14-year-old son -- who also loves Singing in the Rain!

I have not read Till We Have Faces in a few years, but next time I do I will think of your perspective. I have not read the space trilogy yet, but I will ask my wife who has.
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Postby oilinmylamp45 » 27 Feb 2007, 00:33

Favorite book is Mere Christianity. Second is Til We Have Faces
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