Letters to an American Lady

Letters to an American Lady

Letters to an American Lady

Letters to an American Lady

Synopsis

On October 26, 1950, C. S. Lewis wrote the first of more than a hundred letters he would send to a woman he had never met, but with whom he was to maintain a correspondence for the rest of his life.Ranging broadly in subject matter, the letters discuss topics as profound as the love of God and as frivolous as preferences in cats. Lewis himself clearly had no idea that these letters would ever see publication, but they reveal facets of his character little known even to devoted readers of his fantasy and scholarly writings -- a man patiently offering encouragement and guidance to another Christian through the day-to-day joys and sorrows of ordinary life.Letters to an American Lady stands as a fascinating and moving testimony to the remarkable humanity and even more remarkable Christianity of C. S. Lewis, and is richly deserving of the position it now takes among the balance of his Christian writings.

Excerpt

When C. S. Lewis wrote the first letter in the following collection he was 51 years old and long established at Magdalen College, Oxford, as university lecturer and tutor. He had published twenty books, of which four, the outcome of his scholarly pursuits, had given him a wide reputation as medievalist and literary critic. Most of the other sixteen were the results of Lewis’s conversion, at 29, to Christianity and were divided between expository and creative works. Among the former were The Problem of Pain and Miracles and among the latter The Screwtape Letters, a space trilogy called Out of the Silent Planet, Perelandra, and That Hideous Strength. In that year was published The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the first of a series of seven children’s books with clear Christian overtones.

Almost twenty years earlier he and his brother Warren, both bachelors, had settled in a house called The Kilns, four miles east of Oxford and abutting a hillside of fine trees rising above tangled vines and blackberry bushes and, at its base, a small quarry lake where they could swim in water apparently once used by the poet Shelley to sail his little paper boats. With them lived Mrs. Moore, a widowed mother of one of Lewis’s friends who was a casualty on the French front in World War I. Despite the fact that Mrs. Moore during her last years succeeded in making life at The Kilns something of a continuous mis-

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