Book Review: Out of The Silent Planet

29 Jul

I listened to the audiobook of Out of The Silent Planet, book 1 in C. S. LewisSpace Trilogy about a month ago. Science fiction written by a renowned Christian apologist sounds a bit strange, but as always Lewis manages to reveal truth in the most unlikely places. šŸ˜‰ It certainly made me think. Written between WWI and WWII, its science seems a bit old fashioned, but the mechanics of space travel are really not the focus of the book. Malacandria (or Mars) is a very foreign place for the reluctant space traveler, Dr. Ransom. His terror in finding himself among the strange terrain and beings is soon overcome by his interest in the linguistics of the planet’s inhabitants. Through his study of their language, he learns things that make him question his pre-conceived notions of God and faith. Scholars have many takes on this novel and its themes. I came away with two — our ability to know God is limited by what we have decided is truth and people tend to view themselves as superior in regards to others based on their perceived intellect and experiences. If you keep in mind the time period in which this novel was written, you can see Lewis’ concerns for the future. If you also read it with the viewpoint of what has transpired since WWII and our most recent history, it will challenge you to go deeper in understanding mankind and God himself.

There are two more books in the series, and I will eventually get to them. The delay will mostly be due to other reading commitments/preferences than desire to see how Lewis plays out the rest of Dr. Ransom’s adventures.


Audience: adults.

(I purchased the audiobook from Audible. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

Out of the Silent PlanetĀ is the first novel of theĀ Cosmic Trilogy, considered to be C.S. Lewis’ chief contribution to the science fiction genre. The trilogy concerns Dr. Ransom, a linguist, who, like Christ, was offered a ransom for mankind. The first two novels are planetary romances with elements of medieval mythology. Each planet is seen as having a tutelary spirit; those of the other planets are both good and accessible, while that of Earth is fallen, twisted, and not known directly by most humans. The story is powerfully imagined, and the effects of lesser gravity on Martian planet and animal life is vividly rendered.

One Response to “Book Review: Out of The Silent Planet”

  1. Barbara Harper July 29, 2021 at 10:21 am #

    Lewis’s books stretch my brain, fiction or nonfiction. But they’re always valuable.

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