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[Review] The A-Z of C.S. Lewis: An encyclopedia of his life, thought and writings by Colin Duriez

Title: The A-Z of C. S. Lewis: An encyclopedia of his life, thought and writings
Author: Colin Duriez
Publisher: Lion Hudson November 1, 2013
Genre: Non-fiction, encyclopedia of C. S. Lewis
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 352
Rating: 4 1/2 Stars
Source: Free copy from Litfuse Publicity and Kregel/Lion Books in exchange for a review.

Landing page at Litfuse for tour.

Clive Staples Lewis, C. S. Lewis, or to those who knew him intimately he was simply known as Jack. Born 1898 and died November 22, 1963. Does the date in November ring a bell for another famous person's death?
President John F. Kennedy died November 22, 1963.

C. S. Lewis was born in Belfast, Ireland. He had an older brother named Warren, also known as Warnie. C. S. Lewis taught at both Oxford and Cambridge. He was an author, teacher, apologist. He married late in life and had two step-sons. 

This past November 22, 2013 marked 50 years since C. S. Lewis's death.

The A-Z of C. S. Lewis, is a wonderful hard copy encyclopedic edition of Lewis's life and works.
Beginning with: Abhalljin, Abingdon, The Abolition of Man, and completing with: Wormwood, Wraggle, Wynyard School, Wyvern, Zalindreh, Zardeenah.
The book explores his: personal life, academics, writings, friends, family members, atheism, belief in Jesus Christ, apologetics, marriage, death.

My Thoughts:
The A-Z of C. S. Lewis, is a must read book for anyone who loves C. S. Lewis.
It is a book which can be utilized for general reference and information, or can be read from start to finish.
C. S. Lewis was friends with other literary giants, for example J. R. R. Tolkien. The A-Z of C. S. Lewis gives the reader a look at Lewis and Tolkien's comradely and relationship.  
There were a few things about Lewis and his late wife Joy which I did not know until reading this book. Joy had been a communist earlier in her life, her first husband did not change in regards to his belief, but Joy later became a Christian.
I also did not know until reading this book Lewis loved medieval history and Arthurian legends. These themes are a favorite of mine as well.
While reading The A-Z of C. S. Lewis, I realized Lewis's wide scope of reading habits, friends, interests, and intelligence. He strikes me as a man who would be difficult to tear my eyes away from, or to move away from his speech.
A favorite part of the book is reading about Lewis's view of myth and his use of it in writing. Myth is"imaginative fiction and poetry". In reading a myth story, we see the world through a different lens. We are learning in a way which does not feel like learning. It's a perfect teaching tool, for both the young and mature reader.
I would have liked a separate list showing all his books written. There is a list at the end of the book showing all his written material, and another list showing all the books written about him.
I also would have liked to have more information in this book about his turn from atheism to Christianity.
There are two dates in the book given as to his birth, 1892 and 1898. This could have been a typo.


About the Author: Colin Duriez is a writer, editor and frequent lecturer on the lives of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien and the Inklings, having spoken at a variety of conferences in the USA, Canada, Spain, Italy, Poland, Finland and the UK.

His books include The A–Z of C.S. Lewis, C.S. Lewis: A Biography of Friendship, J.R.R. Tolkien: The Making of a Legend, J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis: The Story of Their Friendship, Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings, A Field Guide to Narnia, The C.S. Lewis Chronicles, The Inklings Handbook (with the late David Porter), A Field Guide to Harry Potter and AD33: The Year that Changed the World.  He has also contributed to The Tolkien Encyclopedia and a number of other tomes.
Duriez has appeared as a commentator on extended version DVDs of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Walden Media’s feature, Dreamer of Narnia with The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, BBC television’s The Worlds of Fantasy, PBS’s The Question of God, a documentary about Focus on the Family Radio Theater’s audio dramatization of The Screwtape Letters, among others. The author makes his home in the Lake District of northwest England.
For more information about Colin Duriez and his writing, visit or follow him on Facebook (Colin Duriez, writer) and Twitter (@colinduriez).

Links for more information on C. S. Lewis: