Surprised by Joy by C. S. Lewis
The Shape of My Early Life

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"A young man who wishes to remain a sound Atheist cannot be too careful of his reading. There are traps everywhere . . . God is, if I may say it, very unscrupulous."

This book is not an autobiography. It is not a confession. It is, however, certainly one of the most beautiful and insightful accounts of a person coming to faith. Here, C.S. Lewis takes us from his childhood in Belfast through the loss of his mother, to boarding school and a youthful atheism in England, to the trenches of World War I, and then to Oxford, where he studied, read, and, ultimately, reasoned his way back to God. It is perhaps this aspect of Surprised by Joy that we—believers and nonbelievers—find most compelling and meaningful; Lewis was searching for joy, for an elusive and momentary sensation of glorious yearning, but he found it, and spiritual life, through the use of reason.

In this highly personal, thoughtful, intelligent memoir, Lewis guides us toward joy and toward the surprise that awaits anyone who seeks a life beyond the expected.

"Lewis tempered his logic with a love for beauty, wonder, and magic . . . He speaks to us with all the power and life-changing force of a Plato, a Dante, and a Bunyan."—Christianity Today

"The tension of these final chapters holds the interest like the close of a thriller."—Times Literary Supplement

C. S. (Clive Staples) Lewis (1898–1963), one of the great writers of the twentieth century, also continues to be one of our most influential Christian thinkers. He wrote more than thirty books, both popular and scholarly, including The Chronicles of Narnia series, The Screwtape Letters, The Four Loves, Mere Christianity, and Till We Have Faces.

About C. S. Lewis

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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 100 million copies and been transformed into three major motion pictures.Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) fue uno de los intelectuales más importantes del siglo veinte y podría decirse que fue el escritor cristiano más influyente de su tiempo. Fue profesor particular de literatura inglesa y miembro de la junta de gobierno en la Universidad Oxford hasta 1954, cuando fue nombrado profesor de literatura medieval y renacentista en la Universidad Cambridge, cargo que desempeñó hasta que se jubiló. Sus contribuciones a la crítica literaria, literatura infantil, literatura fantástica y teología popular le trajeron fama y aclamación a nivel internacional. C. S. Lewis escribió más de treinta libros, lo cual le permitió alcanzar una enorme audiencia, y sus obras aún atraen a miles de nuevos lectores cada año. Sus más distinguidas y populares obras incluyen Las Crónicas de Narnia, Los Cuatro Amores, Cartas del Diablo a Su Sobrino y Mero Cristianismo.
Published January 1, 1955 by Harvest / Harcourt, Inc.. 238 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Religion & Spirituality, Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Law & Philosophy, Business & Economics. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Pub Date: Feb. 2nd, 1955 Publisher: Harcourt, Brace ...

Oct 17 2011 | Read Full Review of Surprised by Joy: The Shape o...

BC Books

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In its own way, Surprised By Joy is as artful and thoughtful as Another Woman, and carries with it a character study that lovers of literature and the imaginative mind would find engaging.

Jun 03 2008 | Read Full Review of Surprised by Joy: The Shape o...

BC Books

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Ultimately, this book philosophically examines the idea of joy and what it is exactly, and for some, like Lewis, this joy was coupled with his belief in Christianity.

Jun 03 2008 | Read Full Review of Surprised by Joy: The Shape o...

Open Letters Monthly

Wright searches into the underpinnings of believing in life after death, but he’s a thrilling intellect and cannot resist juicy digressions along the way: If God is indeed the creator of the world, it matters that creation is other than God.

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The Gospel Coalition

Lewis’ works Mere Christianity and Surprised by Joy are an intentional advertising gimmick, although readers quickly discover that the comparisons to Lewis do have some merit.) In Surprised by Hope, Wright attempts to do three things.

Feb 27 2008 | Read Full Review of Surprised by Joy: The Shape o...

A Patchwork of Books

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The Mockingbird

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Nov 23 2011 | Read Full Review of Surprised by Joy: The Shape o...

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Michael Manley 19 Aug 2013

Rated the book as 4 out of 5