Of Edmund Spenser, C. S. Lewis wrote, "his work is one, like a growing thing, a tree with branches to heaven and roots to hell. And in between these two extremes comes all the multiplicity of human life." This book seeks to demonstrate the aptness of that quotation when applied to Lewis himself. From his deepest emotional and psychological landscape, to his prevailing temperament, and then to his training, Lewis marshaled his magnificent rhetorical skills on behalf of his vocation: to make Christianity a reasonable and inviting alternative to doubters. In this--and through the many genres of which he was a master--he never wavered. These are the branches--"the available means of persuasion," as Aristotle put it. Sources, influences, experience and his very self: these are the roots. A close look at these, with a combination of argument, critical analysis, and some fresh connections, finally yield an unexpected portrait. C. S. Lewis and his work are indeed one, with deeper roots and loftier branches than the current reputation of the master and his avuncular persona suggest.