By George MacDonald
It is the story of Mr. Vane, an orphan and heir to a large house-a house in which he has a vision that leads him through a large mirror into another world. In chronicling the five trips Mr. Vane makes to this other world, MacDonald hauntingly explores the ultimate mystery of evil.
Lilith is a journey into another world, where nothing is as it seems and hardly anything is understood to Mr. Vane who travels there. The mysterious Mr. Raven, who guides him in his journey, talks in riddles that frustrate him because he does not understand. In his journey death is much talked of, and there is much evil met as he wanders a strange new land. But joys are wraught as well as Mr. Vane meets with the Little Ones, a group of loving little children who (like Peter Pan) grow so slowly that it seems they are always children. There is also Mara, who is known as the Cat Woman, by those who fear her. And then there is Lilith, for whom the story is named, and her sad tale of misery and endless life for her wickedness.
To be quite frank, I read this slowly so to understand it, but did not accomplish my goal. I am as confused as when I began on ending it. There is but little that seemed intelligable, but it left the traces of having something within its pages that was wise and true. I hope to be able to read it again soon that I may perhaps get more out of the second reading. For now, I cautiously say that it is a strange novel, and am not quite sure as to what it meant. I got a great feeling of life after death, and the messages to those who are alive. But as for anything else, all I could say would be wild guessing.
On a side note: this book was the book in which my grandmother got her name, and in turn my own name. I only wish that the character from which my grandmother got her name was a better one! (She named herself the queen of down where it is hot.) Ah well, my grandmother made the name mean great and good things! I'm proud to be named Lilith after her.