Ex Libris Kirkland

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Subtitle A Modern Fairy Tale for Grown-Ups
First Written 1945
Genre Scifi
Origin UK
My Copy paperback, boxed set of Space Trilogy
First Read July 06, 2012

That Hideous Strength

That Hideous Strength is not as good as the first two books in the Space Trilogy. But it's a fundamentally different kind of book, and I think Lewis did himself a disservice by making it part of the trilogy. If you loved 'Silent Planet' and "Perelandra,' you won't get far with THS if you're looking for more of the same. I definitely started it and abandoned it several times before I finally got the hang of it.

I think if you approach it as a totally different book. It's not a space adventure, it's a morality novel that's about a married couple who live their entire lives on the surface. In the book, they finally confront a situation that requires serious changes and decisions in their lives.

Which is really maybe appropriate for the Space Trilogy after all. Maybe on Mars or Venus the morally correct action is to beat the shit out of a Satan-possessed asshole scientist in an epic fistfight. But on Earth, our battles are more pedestrian: learn how to live in peace with your wife, or choose not to be a snob, or pass up the job promotion with Slightly Sinister Science Corporation.

There are also fighting bears, and living severed heads and Merlin and planetary space angels. But those all really come in at the end.

Noted on July 6, 2012

Ex Libris Kirkland is a super-self-absorbed reading journal made by Matt Kirkland. Copyright © 2001 - .
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