Brenton's Reviews > C.S. Lewis: A Very Short Introduction

C.S. Lewis by James Como
Rate this book
Clear rating

by
8053323
's review

really liked it

Honestly, I was surprised this little volume was as good as it is. Not because of James Como, who has invested 50 years into reading C.S. Lewis well. But I have read about 20 of these Very Short introductions, and have looked at another dozen or so. Though it typically balances brevity and thoroughness, this one is peculiar for the voice of the text. Como writes in a lively style within a very understated series (the introduction to Feminism also has some life). Though it cannot have the lively writing of the figure it studies, it does pretty well. Effectively, you have a 100-page summary of Lewis' life organized as a study of his texts. It works pretty well and thus can be used as a good reference text. There are even a few surprises and refreshing moments, particularly in his treatment of Till We Have Faces and Letters to Malcolm.
4 likes · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read C.S. Lewis.
Sign In »

Reading Progress

May 15, 2019 – Started Reading
May 15, 2019 – Shelved
May 15, 2019 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-3 of 3 (3 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Stephen (new)

Stephen Hayes When I first discovered the Chronicles of Narnia in the 1960s, Lewis was best known for his non-fiction, especially "Mere Christianity". I predicted that in a generation or two he would be remembered for his fiction rather than for his apologetic works, and so I read "Although he is best known for the iconic Chronicles of Narnia series..."


message 2: by John (new)

John Stanifer I'll have to look out for this one.


Brenton Stephen wrote: "When I first discovered the Chronicles of Narnia in the 1960s, Lewis was best known for his non-fiction, especially "Mere Christianity". I predicted that in a generation or two he would be remember..."

Actually, Como provides an intriguing bit that connects to that point:

One surprising article on Lewis that stands out came fifty years ago and is largely unnoticed in Lewis commentary. In May of 1959 ‘Christian Spaceman—C. S. Lewis’, by the influential critic and book reviewer Edmund Fuller, appeared in the highbrow, culturally eclectic hardcover magazine Horizon, an event, for its length and analytical richness but also for its prophetic insights. For example, in introducing Americans to the Space Trilogy (1938, 1943, 1945) Fuller makes the following tangential observation, so utterly surprising to us more than fifty years later:
"I rate high among Lewis’s accomplishments a work generally less well known [my emphasis; this is 1959 remember], as yet, than the trilogy but for which I predict a growing reputation and a long life. This is the series of seven books for children which compose The Chronicles of Narnia."

Como, James. C. S. Lewis: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (p. 10). OUP Oxford. Kindle Edition.


back to top