Sunday, August 24, 2008

C.S. Lewis and The Shack?

Al Hsu, the gifted IVP editor of my book Conversations with C.S. Lewis, has recently posted an interesting piece on his blog about The Shack - the controversial and popular novel by William Young. I'll reserve my comments about The Shack until after I've actually read the book.

At any rate, Al offers some interesting insights on The Shack then notes some thematic similarities to Conversations with C.S. Lewis, specifically the fact that both books are fictional narratives, address evil and suffering, and some other commonalities.

Of course, my book is not a runaway bestseller (yet - maybe someday?) and is specifically about presenting the ideas of C.S. Lewis in fictional narrative form via a series of dialogues with a contemporary atheist. I also tried my best to present orthodox Christian theology, philosophy, and apologetics within the bounds of "mere Christianity," just as Lewis would. Nevertheless, I found Al's post intriguing.

Here's a brief relevant excerpt:

Of course, as publishing folks, we're wondering what we can learn from The Shack and whether it has any implications for our own publishing. IVP's kind of publishing is quite different; we're more likely to publish Tom Wright's straightforward exposition about evil than a fictional narrative about the topic. But we're not completely averse to fictional narrative approaches. In the last year three of my own projects have been narrative ... And it occurred to me during our discussion that Conversations with C. S. Lewis has uncanny similarities with The Shack, including a fictional narrative about a suffering, grieving protagonist who has lost a loved one and meets guides that give him new perspectives on loss and God. (Yeah, I have to slip in the obligatory "If you liked The Shack, you'll love Conversations with C. S. Lewis!" plug here.)

Read the entire post here.

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