C. S. Lewis - The Great Divorce: A Dream

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Gives new meaning to making up an excuse!

Jun 6, 2006 (Updated Jun 7, 2006)
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Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Brilliant Theological work presented in an entertaining form.

Cons:Not long enough!

The Bottom Line: I would advise anybody to take just a few hours of their time and read this brilliant work by C. S. Lewis.


The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis, often thought to be one of the best Christian writers ever, is undoubtedly one of the best stories I have ever read. The book follows one man's journey through both Heaven and Hell and describes everything he sees on this venture.

The man starts off in Hell, a.k.a. "the gray town", where no one gets along and the streets are almost always empty. The man sees a line of people at a corner and decides to join them. The line turns out to be waiting for a bus. When the bus comes, the man decides to get on with everyone else. This bus soon carries the passengers to Heaven where everything is incredibly pure and solid. In turn, all the passengers become ghosts compared to the landscape and Angels. The ghost-like inhabitants of "the gray town" cannot bend even the smallest blade of grass in Heaven. Soon, the Angels, a.k.a. Solid People, come and give the ghosts the option of staying in this paradise if they will allow God into their hearts. Naturally, they are all so afraid of change, and scared by the solid environment that they one by one make up excuses for why they should not stay. For example, one man is so skeptical of the whole situation that he talks himself into believing that this must all be a prank. He believes that the Solid People are just torturing the Ghosts with fake promises. This man talks himself deeper and deeper into his own hole until he can no longer stand it and wants to leave immediately.

Throughout the book, Lewis describes many examples of our unwillingness to change even if the end result will be better. Also in this story, amazing imagery and other sensory details are used that make the whole book very realistic. The only thing I had against "The Great Divorce" is that is too short. I got it to read over the summer but ended up reading it in two days. However, I would still highly recommend this book to anyone that would like an entertaining way to read about important issues.


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