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The first book written by C.S. Lewis after his conversion, The Pilgrim’s Regress is, in a sense, the record of Lewis’ own search for meaning and spiritual satisfaction—a search that eventually led him to Christianity.
Here is the story of the pilgrim John and his odyssey to an enchanting island which has created in him an intense longing; a mysterious, sweet desire. John’s pursuit of this desire takes him through adventures with such people as Mr. Enlightenment, Media Halfways, Mr. Mammon, Mother Kirk, Mr. Sensible, and Mr. Humanist and through such cities as Thrill and Eschropolis as well as the Valley of Humiliation.
Though the dragons and giants here are different from those in Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, Lewis’ allegory performs the same function of enabling the author to say simply and through fantasy what would otherwise have demanded a full–length philosophy of religion.
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An excellent book. In its sharp imagery, its clever inferences, its suspense, its characterization, and its occasional grotesque humor, it stands favorable comparison with its great model by John Bunyan.
The allegorical characters are not just abstractions. They are, in every instance, people objectively real and subjectively true to the inner meaning. The language throughout is plain, straightforward and leanly significant. To many it will seem like a fresh wind blowing across arid wastes.
—The New York Times
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 30 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 Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the universally acknowledged classic Mere Christianity.