Wednesday, January 18, 2006

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

Library Journal
There have been a number of biographies of Lewis over the years by the likes of Walter Hooper, A.N. Wilson, and George Sayer. This new study stands out from the lot in that it covers more than just the facts of Lewis's life. Jacobs (literature, Wheaton Coll.) aims to unravel the origins of Lewis's imagination and write a life of the mind. He is interested in tracing how a child from Ulster grew up to become an Oxford don and a great Christian thinker. Jacobs doesn't overlook Lewis's shortcomings either, aptly demonstrating how some of his best work was produced at the most difficult times in his life. Occasionally sympathetic but mostly balanced, this riveting biography is destined to become a standard work on Lewis for some time. Highly recommended. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Great, and detailed, account of Lewis's life. And yes, apropos, with the very good film adaptation of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Very enjoyable. I listened to the the audio version (read by the author) that I got from Audible - fun to hear, and I'll always think of the book and how I listened to it skating around the Roseville Mn "Oval." Also I enjoyed listening on my daily walk to/from work, especially when he discussed how "walking trips" were such a feature in the lives of men like Lewis and Tolkien, then noted that Narnian and Middle Earth stories were essentially accounts of bands of friends and companions on long walks.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Light from Heaven
Jan Karon
On a century-old valley farm where Father Tim and Cynthia are housesitting, there's plenty to say grace over, from the havoc of a windstorm to a surprising new addition to the household and a mystery in the chicken house.
Well, nothing too challenging or surprising, but a nice, good-hearted story. And there is a devotional quality of the Mayberry-like world of Mitford: if only we could live by faith as surely and confidently as Fr. Tim.....

Don't Know Much About Space
Kenneth Davis

(audio tape from library)

...except, I do - quite a bit, actually, so I didn't listen too closely. Still, a good book (tape) for an intro to astronomy and history of space travel and study.