Shadows of Shadows of Ecstasy: An Irresponsible Suggestion about Charles Williams’ First Novel

Here is a tantalizing post from Brenton Dickieson about “Shadows of Ecstasy.” Do have a read!

A Pilgrim in Narnia

With Relief…

I have rarely been as relieved to complete a novel as Shadows of Ecstasy by Charles Williams. I knew very little about it going in, but wanted to read through his seven “supernatural potboilers” over the next year or so. All Hallows Eve and The Place of the Lion were weird, but brilliant, and War in Heaven was a fun Arthurian romp. Williams’ poetry is difficult and often obscure, but it is always beautiful and evocative. Shadows of Ecstasy was painful to read, occasionally confusing, and obviously filled with a kind of meaning that I found far from obvious.

Despite that, I think it is one of Williams’ most important works.

I have not yet read most of Grevel Lindop’s definitive biography of Williams, or Sørina Higgins’ work on Shadows of Ecstasy at the Oddest Inkling. So it is absolutely irresponsible of me to give the conjecture…

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About Sørina Higgins

Sørina Higgins is a writer, English teacher, and Inklings scholar. Sørina serves as Chair of the Department of Language and Literature at Signum University and teaches English at King's College and Lehigh Carbon Community College. She has published two books of poetry, "The Significance of Swans" and "Caduceus."
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2 Responses to Shadows of Shadows of Ecstasy: An Irresponsible Suggestion about Charles Williams’ First Novel

  1. Anka Schneider says:

    As an almost life-long reader and admirer of CW (first met him in college well over 60 years ago, later wrote a dissertation on the Arthurian poetry) I am fascinated by the many apparantly “popular” editions of SofE pictured in this article – how on earth did you manage to get hold of them all? All I have, (or rather had – it seems inexplicably to have got lost, though I have the other six novels) is the Faber and Faber edition of the thirties.


    • David Llewellyn Dodds says:

      Brenton is amazing at finding such things, with apparent (surely only apparent?) effortlessness, too!


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