Into the Book


“Jack”by George Sayer is one of the best biographies I have read this year so far. The book is long, so it’s not for the faint of heart, but it is definitely in depth about the life of C.S. Lewis. “Jack” chronicles his entire life: from childhood in Ireland to his death at the Kilns, his house.

The book completely and comprehensively covers all the details of his life. Having already read ‘All my Road Before Me’, a section of C.S. Lewis’ journal from when he was a fellow at Magdalen College, reading “Jack” was nice to fill myself on the rest of his life, especially his childhood and later years of life.

George Sayer did a very good job of connecting different parts of C.S. Lewis’ life with other parts, and his perspective is very different from other books I have read on Lewis’ life.

After reading this book, Lewis’ life seems to take four distinct parts: one, his childhood, and times with his mother and father, Albert. Secondly, the World War I era when he was trying to gain a fellowship at a college. Thirdly, his time as a Fellow of Magdalen college. And lastly, the later years of his life when he was married to Joy Gresham and later.

I think that C.S. Lewis’ childhood was the most obscure part of his life, in my opinion, as I hadn’t ever read anything about his childhood. “Jack” goes very in depth to his childhood and analyzes many different aspects, including his time at public school. As a child, C.S. Lewis was a convinced atheist and suffered from many psychological problems, such as an obsession with pain.

Through his middle years Jack came to know Mrs. Moore, a mother of his war friend Paddy Moore who had been killed. Mrs. Moore would live with Jack at their house the Kilns until her death. It was during this time that C.S. Lewis was a tutor of English at Oxford.

In his later life C.S. Lewis wrote many more books, including the Narnia series, Miracles, The Great Divorce, and the Space Trilogy. He became the Professor of Medieval and Renaissance literature at Cambridge and remained there until he died. In the last years of his life he met Joy Gresham, and eventually married her. She died almost one year before C.S. Lewis did.

“Jack” was a very interesting book. Being written by someone who knew Jack intimately, it covers even the small parts of his life. And being over four hundred pages long, “Jack” goes very in depth in some parts of Lewis’ life. But all in all, it was very good book and I enjoyed learning more about different parts of C.S. Lewis’, or Jack’s, life.

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Published on 26 May, 2010. Last updated on

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  1. Anonymous

    Thank you for your review this was very helpful in persuading my to read this book.

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