George MacDonald

You may have come across George MacDonald in the writings of C.S. Lewis. I first learned about him through my pastor when I was a young man looking for good fiction to read. I quickly became addicted to Michael Phillips' adaptations of his books, then later began reading the unabridged versions.

If you haven't read anything by this author, I recommend diving into the unabridged versions right away. Except for the Scottish brogue that is used, sometimes heavily, in his Scottish novels, his books aren't terribly difficult to read. Be aware that MacDonald viewed writing primarily as an outlet for his preaching, so you'll find plenty of it in his books. I have to say I enjoy his preaching.

As a young man I was heavily influenced by the many examples in MacDonald's writing of young fellows seeking their way in life. His model I think was Christian in Pilgrim's Progress, another of my favorite books.

If you are seeking a greater experience of God, and want to know more about the Christian walk, look no further than the books of George MacDonald. There isn't a writer whose books have had more influence on me as a writer, or as a Christian.

The first of MacDonald's books to influence me were his novels. I still remember how embarrassed I sometimes felt bringing the Michael Phillips editions to work with their florid covers. They were romances, and I was a young man reading about people in love. Truly they are more than romances, though. They are stories about how to live, how to walk the Christian life, how to succeed and find your way.

Later I read Phantastes, one of his first books, which is as its title suggests a fantasy. Its imagery is strange and wonderful, and like MacDonald's romances it had a tremendous influence on my writing and my Christian life. I highly recommend all of MacDonald's books. Treat yourself to one today. Many are available for free on Amazon in their Kindle store. Happy reading!

--B.L. Jenkins


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