Perelandra (Anglais) Broché – 1 juin 1996
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AS I LEFT the railway station at Worchester and set out on the three-mile walk to Ransom's cottage, I reflected that no one on that platform could possibly guess the truth about the man I was going to visit. Lire la première page
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The hero of the books is Dr. Ransom, a philologist who is a good man, though not exceptionally heroic at first. The first book finds him captured and whisked off to Mars, where he encounters a society much more morally advanced than our own, and learns that the corruption of our planet is due to an evil influence (which we would call Satan). These higher creatures cannot grasp the concepts of war, murder, or any vice.
The second book finds Ransom transported to Perelandra, also known as Venus. This is Lewis's allegory of the garden of Eden, and here he encounters an unfallen woman who is being tempted into doing the forbidden. Here Ransom learns of the nature of sin, and of the temptation that (Lewis says) befell the parents of our own race.
The final book is quite different from the other two, and Ransom, this time on Earth, is battling an evil organization which is bent on penetrating the mysteries of the universe and purifying the human race. Ransom and his followers are aided by a power that has long slept, and together they battle the power of science gone haywire. We see, through their eyes, the evils of society and of so-called 'higher thought.'
There are many lessons to be learned from this wonderful trilogy, but there is also a remarkable story to be told. If you're a fan of fantasy and science fiction, a reader of Christian and theological works, or both, you will greatly enjoy the Space Trilogy.
If you are primarily interested in religious fiction, and have the patience to read books with more complexity than, say, the Left Behind series, you will like these allegorical journeys through the fall of man. If you are primarily interested in SciFi, CS Lewis takes you to other worlds (Silent Planet, Perelandra) and introduces beings from another Earth-time (Hideous Strength) with an original twist of the good vs. evil storyline.
All three books can be read on their own, however I found that "That Hideous Strength" would have been difficult to follow without the background provided in either "Out of the Silent Planet" or "Perelandra". Regardless of the individual readability of the 3 stories, I started with the 1st book (Out of the Silent Planet) not sure I would enjoy it, and ended up finishing all 3 within a week or two.
1) SETTING - C.S. Lewis just shines in his descriptions of new, exotic places and the beings that live there. His vivid details allow the reader to create a wonderful mental image of a world totally different from our own. Very, very nicely done.
2) CHARACTERS - The cast of characters consists of Dr. Ransom, Dr. Weston, Dr. Devine and the various beings found on Malacandra (sorns, hross, pfifltrigg and Oyarsa). Every character has a purpose and is allogoric of something greater, which is sometimes clearly demonstrated and at other times left to the reader to interpret. At no point was I bored or upset at stereotypes when reading about these characters. Even if you don't see the allogories they represent they are still intriguing and unpredictable.
3) STORY - I read somewhere that this story is a retelling of the Christ story from the Bible. I didn't see that. Yes, there were some similarities such as the Bent One could be Satan and his fall from heaven. Otherwise, just reading the first book I didn't feel like I was bring preached out or given a Bible Study of any type. It was an intriguing sci-fi story of discovery.
Also, like many secular sci-fi books written prior to 1950, this book makes clear commentary on human society. In other words if someone puts this book down because of the social commentary then that reader is unfamiliar with such literary trends as mentioned. I did prefer this author's handling of social commentary more than other authors of the time that I've read.
Lastly, the book is written very well. Many times I felt like I was reading poetry instead of a sci-fi novel. C.S. Lewis' professional handling of the written prose is very, very enjoyable and appreciated.
OVERALL - I can't think of anything wrong with this story. It had action, a mystery, suspense, discovery, aliens, space-flight, characters true to their nature, social commentary, allogory AND all this squeezed into less than 160 pages. In many ways this books ends with most of the story resolved so there doesn't seem to be an immediate need to read the rest of the trilogy. BUT...if you like this first book like I did then you'll find very little reason not to rush out and continue reading right away. A very enjoyable sci-fi read.