That Hideous Strength by C. S. Lewis

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Save it for when you have plenty of time on your hands...or are willing to make time for a different kind of science fiction thriller.


Just as readers have been transfixed by the stories, characters, and deeper meanings of Lewis's timeless tales in The Chronicles of Narnia, most find this same allure in his classic Space Trilogy. In these fantasy stories for adults, we encounter, once again, magical creatures, a world of wonders, epic battles, and revelations of transcendent truths.

That Hideous Strength is the third novel in Lewis's science fiction trilogy. Set on Earth, it tells of a terrifying conspiracy against humanity. The story surrounds Mark and Jane Studdock, a newly married couple. Mark is a sociologist who is enticed to join an organization called N.I.C.E., which aims to control all human life. Jane, meanwhile, has bizarre prophetic dreams about a decapitated scientist, Alcasan. As Mark is drawn inextricably into the sinister organization, he discovers the truth of his wife's dreams when he meets the literal head of Alcasan, which is being kept alive by infusions of blood. Jane seeks help concerning her dreams at a community called St. Anne's, where she meets their leader—Dr. Ransom. The story ends in a final spectacular scene at the N.I.C.E. headquarters where Merlin appears to confront the powers of Hell.


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 April 3, 2012 by HarperOne. 394 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Religion & Spirituality, Business & Economics. Fiction
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Critic reviews for That Hideous Strength
All: 7 | Positive: 4 | Negative: 3


Reviewed by Kirkus Reviews on May 01 2008

Amazing Pseudo-documentation -- and a disturbing undercurrent of perception of forces at work today. 

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Below average
Reviewed by Christin Dicker on Apr 01 2012

I would say only read it if you really want to know how the series end, otherwise leave it alone.

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Fantasy Literature

Reviewed by Kat Hooper on Oct 12 2012

That Hideous Strength is a deeply philosophical novel which, except for the mention of corsets, doesn’t feel dated though it was published in 1945.

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A Patchwork of Books

Below average
Reviewed by Jacket Flap on Dec 01 2008

C.S. Lewis believed that popular science was the new mythology of his age, and in The Cosmic Trilogy he ransacks the uncharted territory of space and makes that mythology the medium of his spiritual imagination.

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Teen Ink

Reviewed by Jared C. on Oct 12 2008

No matter what your religious views are, this book must be read.

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Reviewed by Dan Hiland on May 11 2009

Do yourself a favor and read "That Hideous Strength."

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Above average
Reviewed by Erin Yorke on Sep 17 2008

Save it for when you have plenty of time on your hands...or are willing to make time for a different kind of science fiction thriller.

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