Descent into Hell: A Novel

Open Road Media
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In this provocative, classic metaphysical thriller, a group of suburban amateur actors plagued by personal demons and terrors explore the pathways to heaven and hell

Certain inhabitants of Battle Hill, a small community on the outskirts of London, are preparing to mount a new play by the neighborhood’s most illustrious resident, the writer Peter Stanhope. Each actor struggles with self-absorption, doubt, fear, and sin. But “the Hill” is not like other places. Here the past and present intermingle, ghosts walk among the living, and reality is often clouded by dreams and the dark fantastic. For young Pauline Anstruther, who is caring for an aging grandmother and frightened by the specter of a doppelgänger who gets closer with each visitation, the prospect of heaven exists in the renowned playwright’s willingness to bear the burden of her terror. For eminent historian Lawrence Wentworth, the rejection of his desire pulls him deeper inside himself, leaving him vulnerable to the lure of the succubus and opening wide the entrance to hell.

A brilliant theological thriller, Descent into Hell is an extraordinary fictional meditation on sin and personal salvation by one of the twentieth century’s most original and provocative literary artists. Charles Williams, a member of the Inklings alongside fellow Oxfordians C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Owen Barfield, has written a powerful work at once profoundly disturbing and gloriously uplifting, an ingenious amalgam of metaphysics, religious thought, and darkest fantasy.
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About the author

Charles Williams (1886–1945) was a British author and longtime editor at Oxford University Press. He was one of the three most prominent members of the literary group known as the Inklings—the other two being C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien. Williams wrote poetry, drama, biography, literary criticism, and more, but is best known for his novels, which explored the primal conflict between good and evil. T. S. Eliot, who wrote an introduction to Williams’s All Hallows’ Eve, praised the author’s “profound insight into . . . the heights of Heaven and the depths of Hell, which provides both the immediate thrill, and the permanent message of his novels,” and Time magazine called him “one of the most gifted and influential Christian writers England has produced this century.”
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Additional Information

Publisher
Open Road Media
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Published on
Feb 17, 2015
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Pages
216
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ISBN
9781504006637
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Christian / Classic & Allegory
Fiction / Fantasy / Dark Fantasy
Fiction / Visionary & Metaphysical
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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In post-Blitz London, humanity’s last hope of defeating a powerful magician’s insidious plans lies with a ghost trapped in a surreal city of the dead

During World War II, soon after Ms. Lester Furnival married her beloved Richard, she died in an accident. Now she wanders the dark and lonely streets with her friend Evelyn. An empty mirror image of the London she once knew, the city is a place where time has lost its rules and structure, and where Lester can catch heartbreaking glimpses of the world she left behind.

But all is not well in the realm of the living. The other London has fallen under the sway of the magus Simon Leclerc, a master of black magic and necromancy who would sacrifice the soul of his own daughter in the pursuit of ultimate power. With her widowed husband entangled in the sorcerer’s toxic web along with an enigmatic artist who can paint only the truth, Lester must somehow thwart Leclerc’s malevolent plan if she is to find salvation—for the evil necromancer desires nothing less than total dominion over both worlds.

A ghost story unlike any other, All Hallows’ Eve is the final novel by the remarkable Charles Williams, whose brilliant literary excursions into the spiritual and supernatural realms remain unsurpassed more than six decades after his death. Williams was arguably the most creatively daring and ambitious of Oxford’s famed Inklings, the literary society that included such notables as C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Owen Barfield, and his chilling, breathtaking, and deeply felt fiction remains the gold standard for provocative and intelligent contemporary fantasy.
In this classic tale of spirituality, morality, and the occult, a dark plot to murder an unsuspecting Englishman who possesses the world’s rarest tarot deck unleashes uncontrollable elemental forces

The original and most mystical of all playing-card decks, the tarot has seduced seekers of otherworldly knowledge for centuries—and of all its cards, the most potent are the twenty-two symbolic images that comprise the Greater Trumps. By a strange twist of fate, the very first tarot deck, dating back centuries, has come into the possession of Lothair Coningsby, a uniquely unimaginative Englishman. Though he has no intention of relinquishing his treasure, there are others who covet the tarot’s power. Henry Lee, for one—fiancé of Coningsby’s beautiful daughter, Nancy—is driven by an obligation even deeper than his devotion to his beloved. Henry is of Gipsy blood, and the Romany believe that they alone are the true guardians of the mystical tarot. Invited to spend the holidays at the out-of-the-way home of Aaron Lee, Henry’s grandfather, the unsuspecting Coningsbys are blind to the chilling conspiracy taking shape around them. For on this stormy Christmas Day, their hosts are preparing to commit foul murder to gain possession of the coveted occult deck, unleashing devastating primal forces that no human could possibly contain.

The brilliant fiction of Charles Williams, who was a member of the Inklings alongside fellow Oxfordians C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Owen Barfield, is considered to be among the most provocative, imaginative, and intelligent explorations of spirituality and the supernatural produced during the twentieth century. The proof lies in his magnificent classic The Greater Trumps, a many-layered tale of hubris and faith that is arguably one of the greatest mystical thrillers of all time.
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