The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis (1942)

C-S-Lewis-GoodreadsThe Screwtape Letters is C. S. Lewis‘s entertaining and clever dramatization of Christian conversion. A masterpiece of satire, this classic has entertained and enlightened readers the world over with its sly and ironic portrayal of human life from the vantage point of Screwtape, a senior tempter in the service of “Our Father Below.” At once wildly comic, deadly serious, and strikingly original, C. S. Lewis gives us the correspondence of the worldly-wise old devil to his nephew Wormwood, a novice demon in charge of securing the damnation of an ordinary young man. The Screwtape Letters is the most engaging and humorous account of temptation—and triumph over it—ever written.

It has become a classic for good reason. C. S. Lewis takes common questions, misunderstandings, and his own objections to Christianity, and answers them using the same rational approach that resonated with him as he crossed the line from unbelief many years prior. Be persistent. When I picked up Mere Christianity the first time, it was like pulling teeth. I put it down after two chapters. A year later, a friend of mine (for whom I have tremendous respect) confided that he reads the book straight through once a year to keep perspective. I thought, “Perhaps I should give this another try.” I did, and I couldn’t put it down! What a difference. It was easy reading, compelling, winsome. Of course, the book hadn’t changed; I had. And then, it when on to radically change the way I approach all other books.

Editorial Reviews

Guardian

“This book is sparkling yet truly reverent, in fact a perfect joy, and should become a classic.”

Observer

“Excellent, hard-hitting, challenging, provoking.”

New York Times Book Review

“C.S. Lewis is the ideal persuader for the half-convinced, for the good man who would like to be a Christian but finds his intellect getting in the way.”

Christianity Today

“[The Screwtape Letters] show[s] his ability to dramatize: to set forth an attractive vision of the Christian life, proceeding by means of character and plot to narrate an engaging story, everything colorful, vibrant, and active.”
“C. S. Lewis understood, like few in the past century, just how deeply faith is both imaginative and rational.”

From the Back Cover

A milestone in the history of popular theology, The Screwtape Letters is an iconic classic on spiritual warfare and the dynamics of temptation.

This profound and striking narrative takes the form of a series of letters from Screwtape, a devil high in the Infernal Civil Service, to his nephew Wormwood, a junior colleague engaged in his first mission on earth, trying to secure the damnation of a young man who has just become a Christian. Although the young man initially looks to be a willing victim, he changes his ways and is “lost” to the young devil.

Dedicated to Lewis’s friend and colleague J. R. R. Tolkien, The Screwtape Letters is a timeless classic on spiritual conflict and the psychology of temptation which are part of our religious experience.

About the Author

Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day. He was a Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Oxford University until 1954, when he was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement. He wrote more than thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers every year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include Mere Christianity, Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the universally acknowledged classics The Chronicles of Narnia. To date, the Narnia books have sold over one hundred million copies and have been transformed into three major motion pictures.

On Goodreads.com


The Screwtape Letters
The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed Lewis’s clever and creative approach to illustrating the theology of real life. I read The Screwtape Letters before I read Paradise Lost by John Milton. I was even more impressed with Lewis, seeing his inspiration. I highly recommend The Screwtape Letters to any thinking person who is up for an honest intellectual challenge.

TSOA Front Cover 150 x 150You can find more reviews and discussions of this and many other books on Goodreads.com (including my own reviews and comments about this and other books). It’s one of my favorite sites to help me organize my own reading and keep up with others. When you’re on Goodreads, please visit my author page and “Like” The Soul of Atlas. Consider writing a review and sharing it with your friends on Goodreads and Facebook.com.

 

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