Monday, October 12, 2020

"A Grief Observed" by C. S. Lewis

It's been a while since I read one of CS Lewis's books, and if I'm going to make my goal of reading six of them this year, I'm going to have to get reading, as I think this is only number four.  No, wait, we just finished listening to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe audiobook -- so this would make five.

Anyway, so, this is a really hard book to read.  It's excruciatingly personal.  Lewis was devastated by his wife Joy's death, and he wrote down his feelings and thoughts and questions and fears as he moved through the grieving process.  And then he shared them with us.  I'm glad this book is short, because there's so much raw pain in its pages, and I don't think I could have handled much more of it.

I am glad that Lewis was able to work through the spiritual crisis brought on by losing his wife, and that he shows others that just because you ask God a lot of hard questions doesn't mean you have lost your faith.  And also that just because you don't like what God seems to be giving you for answers also doesn't mean you're not still a Christian.  I think those are easy traps to fall into, and it's important to help people understand them.

But I don't think I will ever brave reading this book again.  I'm glad I did read it, though.

If This was a Movie, I Would Rate It: PG for dealing with some really hard situations that kids aren't going to want to read about anyway.  It's clean, it's just... heavy.


This is my 5th book read and reviewed for my third ride with the Classics Club and my 38th for #TheUnreadShelfProject2020.

10 comments:

  1. This is a really heavy book for sure--but I also really loved it. Lewis is obviously being very raw, but he's also so very *Lewis*, his unique voice and logic shines through, especially when he's reasoning about God.
    I appreciated that about it--and I'm sure it's one I'll revisit when I've dealt with a grief of magnitude (which I haven't as yet, thank God).

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    1. Samantha, yes! Raw, but still relatable. I think it was good to read as a sort of preparedness for when big grief does eventually hit me some day.

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  2. Ooof. This sounds intense with feelings, but good. I always say that I'm such a C. S. Lewis fan, but I've actually not read too many of his books, so I want to try it.

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    1. MC, yes. Very intense with the feelings. But good, in the end. I am really enjoying exploring more of his writing this year!

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  3. C.S. Lewis is an author I would have loved to be friends with, if I had the chance... he's such a kindred spirit with such a deep, beautiful soul. I've never read this book, but I'd really like to. </3

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    1. Kendra, yeah, I kind of wish he could have adopted me, as his Letters to Children were so kind and wonderful. Hope you can read this at some point :-)

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  4. I haven't been brave enough to read this yet. And... I've got a lot more of his to read, so yeah... not sure when it will happen. (I think I'd read Surprised by Joy first, which I heard one of Lewis's friends jokingly referred to as 'Suppressed by Jack' xD, so that piqued my interest.) But thanks muchly for reviewing this one. <3

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    1. Heidi, yeah, this one takes bravery. Or, in my case, the push of the monthly challenge prompt from The Unread Shelf Project being "a book that scares you." I am hoping to read Surprised by Joy before the year ends!

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  5. I agree on this one, too. Very raw and personal, but so good to read. Many of us can relate to his sorrow. Mr. Lewis is one of those deep thinkers who asks profound questions about life that many of us would not have the courage to seek. He is not afraid of the difficult truths.

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    1. Ruth, yes -- it's so nice to have deep thinkers like Lewis to ask the questions we need answers to ourselves.

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