So goodso strange and so long all three together but so good I know there s a lot of the layers I ve yet to unpeel but I really can t stop thinking about the end of That Hideous Strength Lots of good notes and quotes Need to spend time with these books for sure. While Dad is my family s resident sci fi connoisseur, this year Dad and I trekked into interstellar space together, reading C.S Lewis Space Trilogy and Orson Scott Card s Ender s Game I had reservations about reading sci fi novels, as I thought I might end up becoming fluent in Klingon as a result Surprisingly, the genre ended up teaching me a thing or two about theology, and even about the mechanics of the writing craft.Written in the 40s, Lewis Space Trilogy has little to do with the physical world of outer space as we presently know it His writing is clearly informed by the scientific knowledge of his day, but for the most part, the physical world s he writes about serve his stories, which are obviously allegorical Suspend your disbelief, Dear Readers Suspend it in zero gravity.Out of the Silent Planet 1 2 , the first book in the trilogy, features Lewis finding his voice in the genre, and while his first steps are elementary enough, they are also thought provoking and worthwhile While the first two thirds of the book are standard sci fi fare, sometime during the last third, Lewis universe assumes a theological bent that casts life on planet Earth in an entirely different light At the time of this reading, I also listened to N.T Wright s lectures on the Veritas Forum Lewis and Wright pushed outward in my skull, and my inner world expanded as a result My perception of creativity was permanently altered People talk about the narrow mindedness of Christians, which saddens me The imagination of God is clearly broad enough to include, as film director Kevin Smith put it in the disclaimer at the beginning of the movie Dogma, the platypus, among other things If Christ is truly the Son of God, Christians should be the most imaginative lot on the planet.Lewis certainly affirms this in the 2nd book in the series, Perelandra People most often associate Lewis with the Chronicles of Narnia, or with his overt theologically minded works like Mere Christianity or The Screwtape Letters Little did I know, upon embarking into the world of Perelandra, that I was about to read my new favorite C.S Lewis book, a work so colorful and imaginative and theologically charged that it would win me over completely Lewis dramatizes theology in such a beautiful way in this book, making the abstract concrete, providing us with a new perspective on the human condition through comparison with the inhabitants of another world Among other things, he aims to imagine what it would be like if man had never fallen from grace Lewis works out this theological puzzle with panache in this book, and with remarkably powerful results.The third and final installment in the trilogy, That Hideous Strength 1 2 , was a than worthy conclusion to the series It seamlessly integrates Lewis love of myth with his experiences in the academy, resulting in a work that is highly cerebral, complex, and surreal Structurally, it features Lewis at his most ambitious He adeptly juggles parallel narratives, populates his world with a whole world of memorable characters, and finally interweaves elements of the first two books even as this book feels distinctly unlike them Honestly, it is difficult for me to decide whether I like this or Perelandra better, but I think I like Perelandra better from a conceptual standpoint They both stand tall in Lewis oeuvre.After reading these three books from January to March, I found myself appreciating sci fi as a genre in a way I never had before I cut my teeth on the Star Wars trilogy and grew up watching Star Trek The Next Generation with my Dad, but I only saw them as stories set in space rather than intergalactic parables that had the ability to speak about life here on Earth Not all works of science fiction function this way, but Lewis Space Trilogy certain does Lewis travels into the black abyss of outer space only to turn his telescope back on us so we can see ourselves from a God s eye view. The Cosmic Trilogy Relates The Interplanetary Travels Of Ransom, CS Lewis S Ill Informed And Terrified Victim Who Leaves Earth Much Against His Will And Who, In The First Book Of The Trilogy, Out Of The Silent Planet, Published By The Bodley Head In , Encounters The Imaginary And Delightful World Of Macalandra In The Second Book, Perelandra , Ransom Is Transported To A World Of Sweet Smells And Delicious Tastes, A New Garden Of Eden In Which Is Enacted, With A Difference, The Story Of Temptation That Hideous Strength Completes The Trilogy And Finds Dr Ransom Returned From His Travels In Space And Living In An English University Town Where The Senior Common Room Is Given A Mysterious Depth, A Than Earthly Dimension Which Such Things, In The Author S View, Always Have In LifeCS Lewis Believed That Popular Science Was The New Mythology Of His Age, And In The Cosmic Trilogy He Ransacks The Uncharted Territory Of Space And Makes That Mythology The Medium Of His Spiritual Imagination I LOVE C S LEWIS SPACE TRILOGY TO THE UTTERMOST What a festival of shapes, colors, alien and strange beings doing awesome deeds in odd and remote worlds.The Space Trilogy is at the same time and adventure novel, plus a thriller saturated with fantasy and even horror elements Only the legend called C S Lewis could be able to birth such a tale, and deliver it to the reader in this unique and magnificent literary way full of magic Reminiscences of The Lord of The Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia will be purposefully aroused..And if you are fond of J R R Tolkiens writings, then you will indeed enjoy this epic adventure tale by Lewis Out Of The Silent Planet Dr Ransom a philologist is kidnapped to Mars, there he shall be sacrificed to an alien and strange deity So that the kidnappers can exploit the planet and take with them so much gold as they wish.needless to say that the story turn quite different Perelandra This sequel takes place in Venus..A strange world awaits Dr Ransom, populated with colorful and strange beings One of the most dramatic battles recorded in the literary history awaits Dr Ransom against the incarnated terror..The destiny of Perelandra is at stakes That Hideous Strength My favorite one.Let me put it this way, the Loosers club against Nope, no Pennywise the Clown this time unspeakable powers of evil Character development and the craft of story telling excel each other in Brillanz, skill and wit Five stars not enough in my view Happy reading to all of you.Dean D I had extremely high hopes for this trilogy, especially after finishing the first book Out of the Silent Planet, an exceptional work of old fashioned science fiction The first half of Perelandra proved equally gripping, but took a turn for the unreadable once Lewis Christian beliefs seeped too far in my opinion into the fabric of the plot Without spoiling any details, I will say that the entire basis of the narrative came to rely on the acceptance from the reader that The Fall of Man occurred in actuality As someone who does not subscribe to that particular belief, I found it rather off putting for the author to assume that the reader would deem this point as fact, and thus be on board with what the protagonist was fighting for On the contrary, I felt on the side of the villain who was arguing on the grounds of rational and scientific thought I simply couldn t turn another page without feeling a little disingenuous as a reader The storyline clearly became a vehicle for Lewis s religious ideals, and after riding along with him for a while, I respectfully had to hop off. To ask what these books are about is to open quite the can of worms You might say, Its the story of a man named Ransom, and his adventures with space travel and that Written before the days that man had stepped onto the moon, it was far imaginative often mistaken, but oftener insightful than what modern science fiction allows for It DOES take you on a rather fantastic trip the scenery and creatures in this bemusing speculation of extraterrestial life runs far from the cold little green men assumptions You ll find yourself adrift in a bright spherical universe full of everything from giant talking beaver like creatures to immaterial intelligences But thats not quite right, because its much than a thrill ride Its an intricate conversation about the way the universe MIGHT really work, and especially how much larger and fuller it might be than we thought Of course Lewis writes based on the assumption of a CREATED universe which will doubtless throw some people off and with THAT assumption it naturally takes time to explain how gods, angels, even fairies, magic, spirituality and most importantly a supreme diety all fit into the picture There s no sense in denying its a christian work, but as is true Lewis form, the book challenges assumptions and perspectives Anyway thats really not the point because even to say all that you d still be missing the mark There s a spine chilling global conspiracy, in the form of an unstoppable humanist beauracracy which is crashing about england destroying historical colleges, ressurecting wizards, and experimenting on hapless animals and criminals There s sort of a love story, which feels a little like an essay on the nature of love and gender and which trancends through the three books but comes to a head via a young unhappy couple in an english college town There s even a heroic bear named Mr Bultitude, seceral reanimated corpses, and well I m sure you can see how difficult it can become Since I can t, therefore, give a sensible explanation of what the book is ABOUT, perhaps I can reccomend the correct audience The first book is a little deceiving because its easy enough to get through There s something light hearted and adventurous about it, though at times the complicated attempts to communicate human ideals with an alien world hint at the trilogy s denseness Make no mistake though, it goes further and deeper, and the last is the furthest and deepest of all Honestly, its a bit of work to get through Its as if Lewis screwed the lid off of everything you thought you might have known about God and the universe and let the speculation run free Sometimes it takes slow and careful reading to untangle, as the books ponder the mysteries of love, space, time and material Thats not to say its not enjoyable Any C.S Lewis reader will recognize his easy tone, and natural way of moving a story along, but it DOES take some effort In other words, this is not tumbling out of a wardrobe into a fun winter s day adventure This is some marraige of essay and story loosely orbiting some of the core ideas that Lewis was constantly adressing I suppose unless you believe in God in some way or form you ll find yourself resenting alot of it, but it is elevated far beyond what we might consider a religious or inspirational work These books are for people who like to think, dont mind unanswerable questions, and aren t looking for something conventional Enjoy Reading with new bookgroup Nov 2015 Because of time, skipped 1, went straight to 2 Perelandra Can be read and enjoyed as sci fi even though one may get lost at the end OR can be read seriously as theological discussion of an alternate Adam Eve story on another world, even though one may get lost at the end nonetheless Really, although I d like to review this very much, it would take too much time I should write myself a paper on it, just for fun Ha Not sure where time for that would come from But it s really that there s just too much to think about or write about Some thoughts 1 I just don t know how people imagine such things like Lewis imagines the environs and populace of Venus , but I m glad they do 2 Theologically, so much to chew on So much to wonder 3 Finding lots of help understanding this series fully by reading Planets in Peril by David Downing It s pretty great 4 Just love Lewis His sense of humor, even when his intellect soars acres above me, still tickles me Read with bookgroup Jan 2011. This trilogy is definitely something different from the most SF books I ve read I was 17 when I read it and it was the first time religious content in book was so overwhelming that I couldn t help but notice it To the day my impression of it could be described as pearly pink bubblegum in the sunset pretty, soft looking but loses the taste fast and becomes sticky and annoying. I would rank this with Tolkien s Middle Earth work for skill in creating imaginary realities Lewis and Tolkien were close friends and often gave each other feedback on drafts of their work and with Stephen King s The Stand for its power as a story of good and evil Also like those other two stories, I would caution that some of this might be no, is too dark for children or young teens.I especially like the portrayal of evil as stupid, blind, and shallow rather than being intriguing, romantic, or alluring I actually liked this trilogy better than Lewis other and better known Narnia series. Classic Science Fiction Must read for many CS Lewis is best known for his Narnia Series for children and then as a Christian Apologist An agnostic for many years, this English Don and Professor of Literature came to develop a friendship with JRR Tolkien yes, THE JRR Tolkien and over the course of that friendship, converted to Christianity and the Church of England, despite the protestation of Tolkien to a small degree who was himself Roman Catholic Lewis grew in fame throughout England in part due to his writing and in part due to his radio broadcasts known as Fireside Chats which became the basis of one of his influential works, Mere Christianity Why raise this in the context of a review on this Space Trilogy Because it helps to explain the broad appeal of it to many different audiences.Did you enjoy the Narnia Chronicles as a child or an adult reading it to a child Here then is a new vista written to an adult level with many of the same elements of genius in writing and allegory that you came to love Dive in Reorient yourself to the slightly different genre and prepare to be entertained.Are you attracted to the Christian apologetics of Lewis and less inclined to read for entertainment Well then, how about a rollicking good tale that weaves throughout the telling, major tenets and demonstrations of the heart of Christianity that will feed your mind even as you catch yourself enjoying the story.Are you a Science Fiction fan Does science fiction as it was written before the boom in the 1950 s from authors such as Jules Verne and George Orwell appeal to you Here is some writing in that vein and style that will entertain you Yes there are decided Christian overtones in the work that will challenge you, but the story itself is so well written and the theological underpinning woven into the warp and woof of the tapestry that you will not feel preached at You will enjoy the tale on it s own merits.As to the components of the trilogy you will find that Out of the Silent Planet and Perelandra are similar in character Ransom think there may be an allegorical message there is interesting in his role as a Philologist This was probably a tribute to Tolkien the philologist who remained Lewis friend, colleague and a member of the literary circle, The Inkling s who read and critiqued each other s work.That Hideous Strength switches gears a little bit which probably reflects Lewis growing relationship with George MacDonald, also of the Inklings The final book is a little darker and Orwellian but still a very good and thought provoking read.In short there is something for most people here You do not have to be a Christian or even sympathetic to Christianity to read and appreciate these books They stand on their own as classic, strong literature written by a master craftsman If you are attracted to Lewis for his past works and want your literature to have redemptive value to it, then you are in the right neighborhood for that as well.Of all of Lewis works these are probably the least known They are worth the read