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Inexplicably out of print, this is one of the finest audiobooks I’ve ever heard:

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19 thoughts on “John Cleese Reading C.S. Lewis’s “The Screwtape Letters””

  1. Chucky says:

    How can this be out of print?!

  2. Jeff Borden says:

    Agreed. IMO it is THE finest reading of any audiobook i’ve listened to. I’ve searched high and low for it since losing my copy almost 10 years ago. Surely there has to be a publisher somewhere willing to make a new release of this recording.

  3. Bob Wiegers says:

    this was the first audio book I really listened to, and I’ve never heard one better. in fact, the whole genre is ruined to me now. anyway, an excellent reading. thanks for the links!

  4. Jason says:

    I know, our library still has it but it is on tape. I have thought about getting it to record it but that would be wrong, right?

    1. Todd Hoyt says:

      Yes. The text of the book is copyrighted by Harper Collins and is not in the public domain.

    2. Jacob Vanhorn says:

      Copying a personal copy to a more stable technological format should not be an issue. For years we legally copied our tapes and CDs to mp3s for our use and preserving the content. Posting it online for everyone to download would be a very different issue. Loaning it to friends should be fine though. It’s just like a book at that point.

  5. Todd Hoyt says:

    This is truly a great recording. There are other excellent recordings out there and a couple dramatized full cast, but this is probably the best single voice one done.

  6. Bret says:

    We have listened to very few audiobooks and own fewer…but this is one of them. A great performance.

  7. C.S. Lewis was my very first introduction to serious Christian thought. He has been extremely infuential in my life and approach to Christianity. The Screw Tape Letter was and is ground breaking. Almost 20 years after I first read it, however, I am having doubts about his concept that the soul merely becomes small & eventually non-existant without Christ. The Great Divorce, by C.S. Lewis brings this idea to light as well- the idea that Hell is a tiny, grey crack in the dirt- that souls merely die of BOREDOM in hell and are offered salvation any time they want. It is almost as if C.S. Lewis couldn’t bear the idea of a Hell with gnashing of teeth- or that it should be eternal punishment. I loved the idea when I was younger- it suited my notion of God as a LOVING God, not a God of revenge. As I study the Bible more, however, I am left with doubts. Perhaps God really does intend to punish the unsaved forever- and in worse ways than mere boredom. I still love his books, however, and hope he is right!!

  8. Scott Santee says:

    Are there 31 letters total?

    Is this just the first 13?

    Will you be posting the rest?

    Thank you! Thank you!

  9. Stephen says:

    I personally like the audiobook version done by HarperAudio narrated by Joss Ackland better than this version. I think Ackland’s voice is just darker and better suited for the role.

  10. Holy cow, I can’t believe this exists! This is almost the perfect confluence of my favorite things. The only thing better would be to have “The Abolition of Man” read by Chewbacca.

  11. Adam Evans says:

    Do you find it ironic that an atheist is reading “The Screwtape Letters?”

  12. Josh says:

    This is awesome – never thought to look for this on YouTube. A few years ago when I taught 10th grade, we read Screwtape and a student brought in his dad’s cassette tapes of this that he’s had since they came out. Couldn’t believe it was out of print.

  13. Barry says:

    all i can say is “brilliant”!

  14. Sam says:

    Wow! I have an audiotape of C. S. Lewis reading his own work, from The Four Loves. Cleese’s voice sounds reMARKably like Lewis’s on tape! It’s almost like hearing Lewis read it himself!

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Justin Taylor, PhD

Justin Taylor is executive vice president of book publishing and book publisher for Crossway and blogs at Between Two Worlds. You can follow him on Twitter.

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