A Year of Reading

It might be a first, but I managed to keep one of my New Year’s Resolutions for 2012. In January, I resolved to read 50 books or articles related to my research and writing on C.S. Lewis, and I hit #50 near the end of November. I did other reading: Jane Austen, the Hunger Games Trilogy, Holly Black, Alan Bradley, Christopher Hitchens, C.S. Lewis at his deskRichard Dawkins, Frederick Buechner, Shel Silverstein, Anne Lamott, E.L. Konigsberg, Charles Dickens, Margaret Atwood, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., Paulo Coelho, Lois Lowry, a number of Terry Pratchett’s books as well as some indie fiction. The Hobbit should also be on the list, below, but I’ve forgotten it, and some of those may be connected to Lewis. The books I’ve listed below, though, are most central to what I’m working on. I’ve also read about 600 pages of C.S. Lewis’ letters (up to summer 1922) and his journal entries up to the same time period. I’ve read parts of Lewis’s Reflections on the PsalmsStudies in Words, and Miracles, but finished none of them this year. Perhaps next year!

If you would like to track some of my thoughts on the reading, I’ve linked the pertinent blogs. I haven’t blogged on everything, and much of what I read on the Ransom books remains un-blogged (dis-blogged? not-yet-blogged?). “CSL” refers to C.S. Lewis, and I’ve kept the titles as short as possible.

What will I do for 2013? The 2012 list was light on essays and articles (about 1/4), and I know I’ll be reading more essays in 2013. I’ve decided to set my goal at 100 books and articles related to Lewis and the Inklings. We’ll see. Perhaps New Year’s Resolutions, with some exceptions, are made to be broken!

1 01/04 CSL, A Grief Observed (audiobook & book)
2 01/08 Terry Glaspey, Not a Tame Lion
3 01/24 Antony Flew, There Is a God
4 01/24 John Cleese reads The Screwtape Letters
5 01/25 CSL, The Screwtape Letters
6 03/01 CSL, Voyage of the Dawn Treader
7 04/08 Bauder, Stackhouse, Mohler, Olson, 4 Views on the Spectrum of Evangelicalism
8 05/14 CSL, The Silver Chair
9 05/22 Joel Heck, Irrigating Deserts: CSL on Education
10 06/25 CSL, Out of the Silent Planet
11 07/05 CSL, On Other Worlds
12 07/02 CSL, The Dark Tower & Other Stories
13 07/15 CSL, The Screwtape Letters (Illustrated)
14 07/17 CSL, The Horse and His Boy
15 07/19 CSL, Perelandra
16 07/22 David Downing, Looking for the King
17 07/25 CSL, That Hideous Strength
18 08/08 H.G. Wells, War of the Worlds
19 08/20 G.K. Chesteron, The Ball & Cross
20 08/30 Planet Narnia podcast by Michael Ward, Holly Ordway, and William O’Flaherty
21 09/10 CSL, The Magician’s Nephew
22 09/13 CSL Phenomenon (not yet released)
23 09/27 Kathryn Lindskoog, CSL Hoax
24 10/09 T.A. Shippey, “Ransom Trilogy” essay in The Cambridge Companion to CSL
25 10/10 Peter Kreeft, Critical Essays
26 10/11 “Politics of Conservative Hope in Out of the Silent Planet” (not yet released)
27 10/16 Mary Neylan, “Friendship w. CSL” in Chesteron Review
28 10/17 Monika B. Hilder, “Foolish Weakness in CSL’s Ransom Trilogy: A Feminine Heroic”
29 10/22 David Downing, Planets in Peril: A Critical Study
30 10/23 CSL, “The Man Born Blind”
31 10/23 Charlie Starr, Light: CSL’s First and Last Short Story
32 10/26 CSL, Surprised by Joy
33 11/02 Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
34 11/05 Victor Hamm, “Mr. Lewis in Perelandra” (1945)
35 11/05 CSL, The Discarded Image
36 11/06 Wayne Shumaker, “The Cosmic Trilogy of CSL” in Longing for a Form, Peter Schakel, ed.
37 11/09 CSL, The Great Divorce (audiobook & book)
38 11/15 CSL, “Bluspels and Flalansferes”
39 11/16 CSL, “De Descriptione Temporum,” inaugural lecture at Cambridge (1954)
40 11/19 CSL, “The Literary Impact of the Authorized Version” (195)
41 11/19 John Connolly, The Gates (audiobook & book)
42 11/19 CSL, “The Vision of John Bunyan” (1962)
43 11/19 CSL, “Four Letter Words” (1961)
44 11/20 CSL, “A Note on Jane Austen” (1954)
45 11/20 CSL, “High and Low Brows” (1960)
46 11/21 Anne Fremantle, The Age of Faith
47 11/24 Rob Bell, Love Wins
48 11/26 Francis Chan & Preston Sprinkle, Erasing Hell
49 11/26 CSL, “Hell,” ch. 8 in The Problem of Pain
50 11/26 Peter Kreeft, “Hell”
51 12/06 CSL, “Psycho-Analysis and Literary Criticism” (1942)
52 12/13 CSL, “The Longaevi,” in Discarded Image
53 12/14 CSL, “The Anthropological Approach” (1962)
54 12/14 Loomis, “Literary History and Literary Criticism: A Critique of C. S. Lewis” (1965)
55 12/16 Stephen King, On Writing
56 12/17 George MacDonald, Phantastes
57 12/19 CSL, The Last Battle
58 12/20 Mervyn Nicholson, C.R. Maturin & C.S. Lewis in Notes & Queries (2011)

About Brenton Dickieson

“A Pilgrim in Narnia” is a blog project in reading and talking about the work of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and the worlds they touched. As a "Faith, Fantasy, and Fiction" blog, we cover topics like children’s literature, apologetics and philosophy, myths and mythology, fantasy, theology, cultural critique, art and writing. This blog includes my thoughts as I read through Lewis and Tolkien and reflect on my own life and culture. In this sense, I am a Pilgrim in Narnia--or Middle Earth, or Fairyland. I am often peeking inside of wardrobes, looking for magic bricks in urban alleys, or rooting through yard sale boxes for old rings. If something here captures your imagination, leave a comment, “like” a post, share with your friends, or sign up to receive Narnian Pilgrim posts in your email box. Brenton Dickieson is a father, husband, friend, university lecturer, and freelance writer from Prince Edward Island, Canada. You can follow him on Twitter, @BrentonDana.
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12 Responses to A Year of Reading

  1. robstroud says:

    Bravo. And if you can retain as little as 5% of what you’ve read, you are a brilliant man, indeed.


  2. Jessica says:

    A great bibliography! Jerry and I will pick through it for anything we haven’t read yet. (We didn’t do the bulk of our reading in one year but we did focus heavily on CSL and other Inklings the year before and after attending Oxbridge–two weeks of lectures, discussions, dinners, country dances, BagEnds and poking around Oxford and Cambridge put on by the C.S. Lewis Foundation of Redlands, CA every third year).


  3. Jessica says:

    I don’t know how else to let you and your readers know about this upcoming event:
    The C.S. Lewis Foundation cordially invites you
    to join us for our Twelfth Night potluck dinner and reception
    Hosted by Donald Nydam
    1632 Garden Street, Redlands, California
    Saturday, January 19, 2013
    at 5:30 p.m.

    Join us in commemorating the 50th anniversary of C.S. Lewis’s departure for Aslan’s country!

    We’ll be featuring the talents of violinist Frances Moore, pianist/harpsichordist Angela Brand, and soloist Darlene Ross.

    Professor Moore teaches violin at the University of California Riverside and Loyola Marymount University. She has played extensively in the Los Angeles Opera, the LA Mozart Opera, and in numerous film scores.

    Dr. Brand teaches at California Baptist University and performs regularly in southern California as a harpsichordist, pianist, and conductor.

    Darlene Ross is a speech pathologist at Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage. She is a graduate of Loma Linda University and sang as part of the Loma Linda University Church Sanctuary Choir.

    In addition to the fellowship and music, we will offer a report on the Foundation’s accomplishments in 2012 and the promise and challenges of 2013.

    Enjoy the company of friends, old and new!

    We hope to see you there!

    R.S.V.P. by Wednesday, January 18th
    by emailing selmore@cslewis.org or by replying directly to this message.


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