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With the heavily advertised film adaptation of C. S. Lewis's The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe hitting theaters December 9, publishers have flooded the market with books about Lewis and his work. The following is a sampling of the more than 30 books published in the last few months.


The Narnian: The Life and Imagination of C. S. Lewis
Alan Jacobs
HarperSanFrancisco, 2005

Jacobs, professor of English at Wheaton College, asserts that Lewis wrote The Chronicles of Narnia as an insider, that is, as a citizen of the Narnia that developed out of his own imaginative life. While there are many biographies of Lewis's life, this is unique as a biography of his imaginative development. Jacobs appreciates Lewis's breadth as a reader and notes how easily Lewis's imagination could draw from a wide range of sources, develop ideas, and incorporate them into his own work. A reader may, at times, disagree with Jacobs's critical judgments. But all must agree that his insights are fresh, his style fluid.

Jack's Life:
The Life Story
of C. S. Lewis

by Douglas Gresham
Broadman & Holman

Jack's Life: The Life Story of C. S. Lewis
Douglas Gresham
Broadman & Holman, 2005

Apart from the brief "Memoir" by his brother, W. H. Lewis, this is the first book-length account of C. S. Lewis's life by someone who lived with him. Gresham, Lewis's stepson, draws on his personal recollections and other sources to tell "the extraordinary life of an extraordinary man. "But Gresham doesn't glorify Lewis; he humanizes him. Gresham tenderly concludes, "He was the finest man I ever knew in my life, and I miss him to this day."

Literary Criticism

Into the Wardrobe:
C. S. Lewis and
the Narnia Chronicles

by David C. Downing

Into the Wardrobe: C. S. Lewis and ...

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The Lion, The Witch and The Library
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December 2005

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