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Lilith - cover

Lilith

George MacDonald

Publisher: RosettaBooks

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Summary

The 19th-century British author’s fantastical masterpiece, “the first text to employ the idea of going through a mirror into another world” (The List, “100 Best Scottish Books of All Time”).   Subtitled, a little oddly, “A Romance,” which assuredly it is not, eight distinct manuscript versions of Lilith exist, chronicling the book’s fitful development under MacDonald’s pen until its release in 1895. Some view Lilith as the otherworldly climax of MacDonald’s literary career. As in Phantastes, with which Lilith is usually linked, the narrator finds himself embarking on a quest. But unlike the earlier journey into the land of faerie, that of Lilith is an inward journey that leads to the world of death, exploring what new self-awarenesses, even repentance, may be possible in that realm. Lilith is decidedly dark and difficult to grasp and is not for all readers. MacDonald himself felt that it had been inspired by God as his “final message,” though his wife Louisa was troubled by it and counseled her husband not to publish it. This edition for The Cullen Collection is unedited in any way.   “An extremely Freudian book, with sexualized old testament type lusty biblical images, and feelings, which is very surprising, as it was written in Victorian times, by a minister, as that was what MacDonald was . . . This is all spun out in an engrossing prose, with beautiful poetic descriptives, and with much passion and Art. The World of the book seems to me to be much more real, and more terrible, then Tolkien, and more anguished. The writing . . . is both extremely literate, and lavish.”—Daily Kos

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