Nikki 's Reviews > C.S. Lewis: Creator of Narnia

C.S. Lewis by Michael  White
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Oct 11, 2013

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bookshelves: non-fiction

First book of the October '13 readathon!

Michael White's biography of C.S. Lewis is engaging, careful, and warm. I think it's difficult not to be biased at all when writing a biography, but White does point out the other side of several stories, and takes his time to lay out the circumstances of Lewis' life, his loves and friendships. He doesn't seem to have made enemies too readily, from this account: even where his deep friendship with Tolkien decayed, there's no particular evidence offered for Lewis' alleged bitterness about it.

In many ways, as White says, Lewis was a troubling man. I was interested by his interest in sadism as a young man, and by White's sensitivity in trying to portray fairly his relationship with Janie Moore. To be honest, I thought we heard a little too much about Janie the domestic tyrant, and not enough about the qualities that made Jack Lewis so faithful to her for so long -- I'm sure they must be there. I'd have liked to read more about Joy, too.

All in all, the structure of the book is a little awkward in that each chapter covers a certain topic, more or less, so there's a lot of dodging about as White tries to describe separately parts of Lewis' life which of course overlapped. But overall, it was an interesting and an easy read.
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message 1: by Judy (new)

Judy I haven't read this one. I read the biography by A N Wilson and found it very well done. It includes much of what you thought missing in White's version. Also, have you seen the movie Shadowlands? So good.

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