Looking For The King: An Inklings Novel

Looking For The King: An Inklings Novel

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by Dr. David C. Downing
     
 

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It is 1940, and American Tom McCord, a 23-year-old aspiring doctoral candidate, is in England researching the historical evidence for the legendary King Arthur. There he meets perky and intuitive Laura Hartman, a fellow American staying with her aunt in Oxford, and the two of them team up for an even more ambitious and dangerous quest.Aided by the Inklings-that

Overview

It is 1940, and American Tom McCord, a 23-year-old aspiring doctoral candidate, is in England researching the historical evidence for the legendary King Arthur. There he meets perky and intuitive Laura Hartman, a fellow American staying with her aunt in Oxford, and the two of them team up for an even more ambitious and dangerous quest.Aided by the Inklings-that illustrious circle of scholars and writers made famous by its two most prolific members, C.?S. Lewis and J.?R.?R. Tolkien-Tom and Laura begin to suspect that the fabled Spear of Destiny, the lance that pierced the side of Christ on the cross, is hidden somewhere in England.Tom discovers that Laura has been having mysterious dreams, which seem to be related to the subject of his research, and, though doubtful of her visions, he hires her as an assistant. Heeding the insights and advice of the Inklings, while becoming aware of being shadowed by powerful and secretive foes who would claim the spear as their own, Tom and Laura end up on a thrilling treasure hunt that crisscrosses the English countryside and leads beyond a search for the elusive relics of Camelot into the depths of the human heart and soul.Weaving his fast-paced narrative with conversation based on the works of the Inklings, author David Downing offers a vivid portrait of Oxford and draws a welcome glimpse into the personalities and ideas of Lewis and Tolkien, while never losing sight of his action-packed adventure story and its two very appealing main characters.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Downing (Planets in Peril) tries his hand at fiction, but his plodding debut is less an adventure than a tiresome showcase of imaginary philosophical discourse between C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and other members of an Oxford University literary discussion group called the Inklings. American doctoral candidate Tom McCord is writing a guidebook of Arthurian sites, and during his travels through 1940 England, he meets Laura Hartman, who tells him of her curious King Arthur dreams, and the two are soon traveling together and ignoring clear signs that they are being followed. Eventually, Tom becomes convinced the Spear of Destiny (the one that pierced Christ's body during the crucifixion) is hidden in England. Once their search puts them in touch with the Inklings, the story becomes dominated by discussions about Christianity, free will, and mythology. Even with the addition of thugs, a Nazi secret agent and his inept accomplice, some corny romance, and a too cute conclusion, this anemic yarn has little suspense, less action, and no mystery. (Nov.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781586174347
Publisher:
Ignatius Press
Publication date:
01/01/2010
Pages:
250
Sales rank:
665,623
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

David C. Downing, PhD, is the R. W. Schlosser Professor of English at Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania. He is the author of four award-winning books on C.?S. Lewis: Planets in Peril, The Most Reluctant Convert, Into the Region of Awe: Mysticism in C.?S. Lewis and Into the Wardrobe: C.?S. Lewis and the Narnia Chronicles . Downing has also written short fiction for Christianity Today and other periodicals.

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Looking for the King: An Inklings Novel 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Joel_M More than 1 year ago
I think the author was aiming for a novel in the mystical-relic-hunting-good-vs-evil style of Charles Williams where Williams and the other Inklings were secondary characters. The parts of the book in which the Inklings appeared were entertaining (probably because they were composed largely of actual quotes by Lewis, Tolkien, Williams and Dyson), but overall the storytelling was stilted, preachy, and predictable.
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