C.S. Lewis is perhaps best known for seven high fantasy novels that comprise The Chronicles of Narnia.
However, the British author also penned three classic Space Trilogy titles: Out of the Silent Planet (set primarily on Mars), Perelandra (set mostly on Venus) and That Hideous Strength (Earth). All three Space Trilogy novels are now available in e-book format for the first time in the United States.
The Space Trilogy depicts the adventures of the brilliant Dr. Elwin Ransom – a character modeled after fellow Oxford professor JRR Tolkien – as he wages war against the powers of evil.
Out of the Silent Planet opens with the abduction of Ransom who is taken by spaceship to the red planet of Malacandra, or Mars. While plotting to evade his captors – who plan to plunder the planet’s treasures and offer Ransom as a sacrifice to the creatures who live there – he discovers he hails from the ‘Silent Planet,’ or Earth, whose tragic story is known throughout the universe.
Ransom then voyages to the paradise planet of Perelandra, or Venus, which turns out to be a beautiful Eden-like world. Horrified to find his old enemy there as well, Ransom engages in a desperate struggle to save the innocence of Perelandra.
Ransom eventually faces an epic battle against dark forces preparing an assault on planet Earth. Indeed, it is up to the academic and his companions to squelch this threat by applying age-old wisdom to a new universe dominated by science. The two groups struggle to a climactic resolution that brings the Space Trilogy to a magnificent, crashing close.
The Space Trilogy also introduces a number of classic Lewis concepts, including super-human extraterrestrials known as the Eldila, the Oyéresu (powerful Eldila) who control the course of nature in the Solar System and Hnau, a word in the fictional Old Solar language which refers to “sentients” such as Humans.
C. S. Lewis (Clive Staples Lewis) (1898-1963) wrote more than thirty books over his lifetime. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include The Chronicles of Narnia, The Screwtape Letters and Mere Christianity.