Cover image for Becoming Mrs. Lewis
Becoming Mrs. Lewis
Patti Callahan
Inspirational Fiction
Historical Fiction
Now aUSA TODAYandPublishers Weeklybestseller! "Patti Callahan seems to have found the story she was born to tell in this tale of unlikely friendship turned true...
Thomas Nelson
Digital Format:
Windows Media Audio


Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

Callahan (The Bookshop at Water's End) vividly enters the life of a woman searching for both God and romantic love in this pleasing historical novel about writer and poet Joy Davidman. In 1946, Joy lives in Ossining, N.Y., with her alcoholic husband, Bill Gresham, and her two small sons. In a moment of desperation, she prays to a God she doesn't believe in and experiences feeling "fully known and loved." Three years later, now deeply considering Christianity, she writes to Christian apologist C.S. Lewis with her questions about God. He responds, beginning a long-term correspondence in which Joy finds "peace, connection, and intellectual intimacy." By 1952, she wants to leave her unfaithful, abusive husband, but sees no way out. She does manage to take a much-needed physical and mental respite, heading to England for six months and falling in love with both England and Lewis; her only regret is leaving behind her sons. But, even after Bill and Joy divorce, Lewis at first keeps their relationship platonic, and Joy must search for true love and fulfillment through her relationship with God. Making full use of historical documentation, Callahan has created an incredible portrait of a complex woman. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

Behind every great man is a great woman, as the saying goes, and for acclaimed author C.S. Lewis, that woman was writer Joy Davidman. Callahan (The Bookshop at Water's End, as Patti Callahan Henry, 2017) brings to life the friendship turned romance between the two. Worn down by motherhood and marriage to an alcoholic, committed atheist Davidman, in the middle of a dark night, falls to her knees and prays to God for the first time. Despite the confidence of her spiritual awakening, there were questions for this atheist turned Christian. When a friend suggests that Joy write to Lewis, a mutual acquaintance, a correspondence begins that will change Joy's life. Readers familiar with the life and work of C.S. Lewis will relish learning about the woman who inspired some of his most famous books. Others will find the slow burn of the romance between the two mesmerizing. All fans of women's fiction, particularly works with religious themes, will appreciate reading about this vibrant and intelligent woman.--LynnDee Wathen Copyright 2018 Booklist

Library Journal Review

This meticulously researched and beautifully written historical fiction recounts the relationship and marriage between noted poet Joy Davidman and the incomparable C.S. Lewis, renowned theologian and author of the beloved "Chronicles of Narnia" series. The story takes place over the relatively short time span of the 1950s, encompassing Davidman's first letters to Lewis and culminating in her early death from cancer, providing insight into the theology, spiritualism, and intellectualism of the times accompanied by healthy portions of Davidman's and Lewis's everyday trials and joys. A strong underlying theme demonstrates the influence of Davidman (and many women of that time) on the men they loved and lived for. Understated and eloquent narration by Lauren Woodward complements the story. There is certainly a sentimental bent, but the writing and narration curb listeners' tears. VERDICT Listeners will wish to return to Lewis's writings (theological and children's literature) and will certainly wish to savor Davidman's works including the elegant sonnets that precede the chapters. ["Callahan's writing is riveting and her characters spring to life to create a magical and literary experience that won't soon be forgotten": LJ 9/15/18 starred review of the Thomas Nelson hc.]-Sandra C. Clariday, Cleveland, TN © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.