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Publisher's Summary

Perelandra is a planet of pleasure, an unearthly, misty world of strange desires, sweet smells, and delicious tastes, where beasts are friendly and naked beauty is unashamed, a new Garden of Eden, where the story of the oldest temptation is enacted in an intriguingly new way. Here, in the second part of the trilogy, Dr. Ransom's adventures continue against the backdrop of a religious allegory that, while it may seem quaint in its treatment of women today, nonetheless shows the capability of science to be an evil force tempting a ruler away from the path that has produced a paradisiac kingdom.

©1944 Clive Staples Lewis (P)2000 Blackstone Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"Geoffrey Howard's skilled narration keeps the listener riveted. His scholarly handling of the text minimizes characterization, while easily distinguishing the players. Howard's respect for the subject matter equals Lewis's own and entices the listener to address serious questions of temptation and morality." (AudioFile)

Featured Article: 95+ C.S. Lewis Quotes About Love, Life, Faith, Bravery, and Friendship


Born in Belfast, Ireland, in 1898, C.S. Lewis is perhaps one of the most esteemed and beloved authors of all time. His acclaimed classics range from The Chronicles of Narnia fantasy series to the theologically-specific Mere Christianity. As one of the world’s most respected authors, Lewis’s words of wisdom continue to inspire countless readers and listeners. Here are our favorite quotes from C.S. Lewis about friendship, love, life, and faith.

What listeners say about Perelandra

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

An Insightful Look at the Nature of Temptation

In contrast to the scoring by other reviewers, I felt that this was the strongest book in what is commonly known as "The Space Trilogy". Lewis' examination of the nature of temptation is truly fascinating as we consider how someone who may not fully realize the ramifications of disobedience can be easily misled by a clever tempter.

One of the strongest images that remains with me after listening to this book is the portrayal of Satan. One comes away with a greater understand of the hideous joy he derives from torturing, deceiving and harming creation after reading some rather grotesque scenes within the book.

Although the book does start slow (which is the case in all 3 books in the trilogy), it is a VERY worthy read and has become one of my favorites among Lewis' works of fiction. IMHO it ranks up there with "The Great Divorce" as one of Lewis' best.

The Narrator is also SUPERB!

59 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Beautifully Crafted

I have listened to about 40 audio books and this one has pushed me to write a review.

I have never met a more insidious creature as one found in Perelandra. The "unman" character will chill you to the bone. He is worth meeting.

Lewis has the gift of building complex concepts residually for even the most ubiquitous experience so that sentence after sentence you find yourself understanding some concept through so many angles and metaphors that you will be surprised that your mind can even hold that much at one time.

Do not worry about book 1 and 3 of the series. They are not as good.

25 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Perelandra stands on its own.

Perelandra is one of my favorite C.S. Lewis books. Even though it is the second book in a trilogy, I think it stands on it's own merits as a great work. I read it before reading the other two books in the trilogy. Perelandra will cause you to pause and think about your own existence as Lewis examines the struggle between good and evil at the dawn of creation. This is a must read.

16 people found this helpful

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Lewis's finest example of depth and creativity.

This isn't as lovable as Narnia or witty as Screwtape, but the insight into the human psyche and heart was just as impactful. Ransom continues to show is mettle and strength of moral character as he travels through Venus. Lewis's description of evil is both on point and creepy. This is meant for slow reading, to be equally enjoyed and pondered.

3 people found this helpful

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A story for the ages

I first read this book 50 years ago. This reading brings this timeless story back fresh and new.

3 people found this helpful

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Some good ideas, but devolves into dense babel

Great imaginary-planet descriptions (never mind that we now know that Venus is nothing like this), and even some cool metaphysical ideas toward the beginning. But it becomes dense lecturing philosophical babel by 2/3 through. I gave up on the final chapter.

3 people found this helpful

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Clever science-fiction weighed down by allegory

Lewis sets up an interesting premise in the series' first book with his subtle nods to themes of Christianity and a wonderfully descriptive world that can be appreciated both metaphorically and at face value. In Perelandra however, that subtly is gone and much of the book is weighed down by theological arguments and on-the-nose allegories. Not to say these parts are not interesting or well thought out (the discussions between Ransom and the Devil are intriguing for sure), but it interrupts the narrative, slows down the pacing, pulls us out of the world, and is altogether poor writing.

That being said, the world of Perelandra is splendid and the purely descriptive parts of the book (exploring the floating islands, riding the fish, wandering the caves) are superb. And the narrative that is here is a novel twist on a Biblical classic that has some clever false starts (the gourds of "pleasure," the reptilian creature who nudges Ransom on).

As a non-Christian, I thoroughly enjoyed Out of the Silent planet. But I can't recommend Perelandra (and perhaps won't read the final installment) because of the heavy-handedness of much of the dialogue and writing. Unless you are thoroughly interested in theology or moral philosophy, this will be a dense read for sure.

2 people found this helpful

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Beginning

Love Perelandra! Lewis was such a gift to the world. His imagination and creativity coupled with his intelligence is quite unmatched unless by his friend, Tolkien. Such a view of the beginning of humans and sin.

2 people found this helpful

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Past Fantasy Meets Contemporary Reality

For a novel released around 1944, the text offers great insight into the controversies that engulf our world today.

2 people found this helpful

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Lewis was a master of intricacies.

I re-read the space trilogy every year for pleasure and find that I discover and understand more each time. The story and fantasy settings provide a glimpse into one possible hidden explanation of our observable world in Maleldil's will. If you enjoy any of Lewis's other writings this is definitely worth trying.

1 person found this helpful