Book Review: The Screwtape Letters

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. LewisC.S. Lewis wrote this great book in 1942. Do not dismiss this fictional account as mind candy or rubbish. It is simultaneously amusing, instructive and imaginative.
 
The premise is that Lewis is reprinting letters written by Screwtape, a veteran devil, to his nephew, Wormwood, a novice demon.  Lewis indicates in the preface that these letters fell into his hands and he has no intention of telling the reader how that occurred.
 
The series of letters is designed to assist Wormwood in tormenting and distracting a young man who goes through daily life stumbling in and out of the Christian faith. It is educational and humorous to read how a demon might easily dissuade a human from following Christ and encourage a man to focus on himself.
 
While experience with the thoughts of demons are rare, Lewis summons a very plausible outline of the contemplations and musings of Satan’s minions. Such a believable account of the demonic is provided that the reader can find himself fearing for the author’s psyche. In the afterward Lewis comments that his excursion into the minds of demons was an unhealthy trip he did not desire to duplicate.
 
Screwtape cheers as the man falls into temptation and jeers as the man progresses in his faith. While nothing in the book is foul or vulgar, it is admittedly a touch disturbing to wonder through the thought processes of a demon. If only to obtain a glimpse into the plausible mind of the enemy, this book is a worthy read and deeply engaging.