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Becoming Mrs. Lewis

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  10,179 ratings  ·  1,833 reviews
In a most improbable friendship, she found love. In a world where women were silenced, she found her voice.

From New York Times bestselling author Patti Callahan comes an exquisite novel of Joy Davidman, the woman C. S. Lewis called “my whole world.” When poet and writer Joy Davidman began writing letters to C. S. Lewis—known as Jack—she was looking for spiritual answers, n
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Hardcover, 406 pages
Published October 2nd 2018 by Thomas Nelson
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Kristi I am an atheist and I really enjoyed it. Their faith is a large part of the story, but their conversations about religion are often questioning and…moreI am an atheist and I really enjoyed it. Their faith is a large part of the story, but their conversations about religion are often questioning and never preachy. The complexity of their relationship is written very well and the story was very moving even if you're not into Christianity.
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4.01  · 
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 ·  10,179 ratings  ·  1,833 reviews


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Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
This is some kind of special! 5 stars! ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Patti Callahan (Henry) is one of my favorite authors. How do I know this? I own all of her books and a few are “saved” unread for the book apocalypse. You know, I’m well-prepared for that. When I read that she was writing historical fiction for the first time, and that it also involved C.S. Lewis, I was all in.

Joy Davidman is the main character. The book begins with her life as a wife and mother, and I could sense right away that something is not
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Erin
Oct 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, netgalley
I have to say that this book took me completely by surprise. Honestly, I think sometimes when I approach a book about real people, in this case C.S.Lewis and Joy Davidman, I cannot help but ask myself "So which one is going to be the jerk?" But Patti Callahan unfolds the story of the meeting of the minds as much as much as that of the heart. People, this book is #relationshipgoals, the type our mothers and fathers hope we will encounter as we travel the road of love. Seventeen years in age dif ...more
Lisa Wingate
Apr 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pulled me in, kept me up, left me joyful. Need I say more?

In case you aren't yet persuaded to snatch up this beautiful book for your reading stack, let me add that Patti Callahan's writing is at times so breathtaking, as a writer, I paused to reread a turn of phrase. As magical as the writing is, though, the novel's true magic is the revelation of the man behind the stories we all know and the woman, the outsider, who captured his heart. Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis were an unlikely match, separa
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Diane S ☔
This is going to be less a review than just myself explaining how I was all over the place while reading this novel. I think most people have heard of C. S. Lewis and his Narnia, but of his only wife Joy, very little. Was what drew me to this book. I liked it, I didn't like it, found it repetitive at times, interesting at others, grew frustrated with all the spirituality, philosophizing, the tone was so melancholy, not much joy to be found within. So conflicting, a good look at a woman who wante ...more
Literary Soirée
I first read an excerpt of this stunning new book and longed for more, so was ecstatic to receive a full review copy from Thomas Nelson-Fiction. Felt like Christmas had come early, which indeed it had, as BECOMING MRS. LEWIS is everything I’d hoped for and more.

Author Patti Callahan is a writer’s writer and a reader’s dream. Her prose is lush, her characterizations true, and her fictionalized account is thrilling as she retells the towering love story between C.S. Lewis, the 20th Century’s great
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Deanne Patterson
How does one write a review for a book like this, a book that is quite possibly the best I've read this year? How can a review even begin to give this book the proper justice?
This book has taken a piece of my heart with it when I finished it, never to be returned!
I'll admit to having never read a C.S. Lewis book and never having heard of his wife, Joy.
This book isn't just a mundane book about their life and how they met, it started out by her contacting him by letter, by the way. No, this book h
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Diane Barnes
I'm in the minority on my rating of this book, so I'll just say it was not my cup of tea. Had I not been reading it for my book club I would have DNF'd the whole thing. I was frustrated and bored because it felt as though the author couldn't decide whether this was a biographical novel, religious fiction, or chick lit, and the combination just did not work for me.
Lisa
Feb 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

SUMMARY
Joy Davidman is a writer and poet living in Ossining NY in 1946. She is locked in a loveless marriage with her alcoholic husband, Bill Gresham, and their two young sons. In a moment of desperation, she says a prayer to a God she doesn’t believe in and has an overwhelming experience that causes her to want to find out more about Christianity. She writes to Christian apologist C. S. Lewis with questions about God. Lewis responds, beginning a long-term correspondence between the two. Joy fin
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Marialyce
Oct 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: net-galley
4 intensity of love stars
My reviews can be found here: https://yayareadslotsofbooks.wordpres...

It is often very hard to find true love, searching for it, we so many times stumble looking for that one person who makes us whole, who makes us feel valued, who makes us feel loved.

In Becoming Mrs. Lewis, Patti Callahan explores the love story between C. S. Lewis, a well known older author living in England, and Joy Davidman, a young poet, mother, who was trapped in a marriage to an alcoholic and phil
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Melissa Tagg
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I don't know if I can possibly put into words how much I loved this book...or how deeply it touched me. Which is almost funny because when I started reading it, I wasn't actually sure it would end up holding my interest. But once I got going, I couldn't stop. The writing itself is just so pretty...but too, I adored the layered characters. I've seen a review here or there from folks not necessarily loving the way C.S. Lewis is portrayed or feeling let down by the character of Joy. But I loved her ...more
☮Karen
Mar 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"We are often woefully negligent of the women next to the men we admire, and Joy Davidman is one of those women."
Patti Callahan in A Note From the Author, Becoming Mrs. Lewis

I knew nothing about poet and novelist Joy Davidman before, and very little about C.S. Lewis other than he has written many books that I've never had the slightest interest in. The author, however, has been a fan for years of them both and strove to make Joy's extraordinary accomplishments known. Callahan has given us the st
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Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
BECOMING MRS. LEWIS is a book that I have been looking forward to reading for a long time. At the same time, I put it off because I was afraid it would not live up to my expectations. I had previously read JOY by Abigail Santamaria, an excellent non-fiction book about Joy Davidman and her life with C.S. Lewis. When I finally sat down and started to read the book, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I loved it.

READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW OVER AT FRESH FICTION!
Maddy
Oct 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“How is it that my heart is breaking and yet I’ve never been so happy?”

Wow, what a truly beautiful retelling this is. It’s not often I enjoy a book as much as I did this one.

Becoming Mrs. Lewis is a retelling of the friendship / marriage of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis. I honestly had no idea what to expect, but I definitely wanted to read a retelling of the man who created Narnia. This book is just beautiful and I absolutely loved it. The story is in first person which I used to say I wasn’t a
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Judy Collins
Check out my Q&A Interview with Author Patti Callahan Henry! Thank you, Patti— so much fun.

Patti Callahan Henry has been a favorite author of mine throughout the years, an avid fan –with twelve New York Times bestselling novels – she has been hailed as a “fresh new voice” in contemporary Southern fiction. I have had the opportunity of reading each of them and thoroughly enjoyed.

In her latest historical fiction, the author dazzles! She vividly re-creates the world of Joy and C. S. Lewis
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Amybibliophile
Thank you Harper Inspire for sending me an advanced reader copy of this magnificent book!

“What on earth would become of me if I should ever grow brave?”

When I requested a review copy of Becoming Mrs Lewis, I knew it wouldn’t be a book I’d usually pick up but having read so much fantasy & YA recently, I fancied a change. I didn’t, however, expect to be blown away by this amazingly real story that bares all to the reader holding nothing back.
If you don’t already know, it is about writer/poet
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Rachel McMillan
Jun 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Balancing Joy Davidman's pragmatic voice with a slow-rendered love story is a carefully thought out exercise in developing romance.

Two largely different people come together against a circumstance that would shun them and continue to find their bond tightening. For those who know a lot about Lewis' history, Callahan's well-researched novel will take you to the more human side of the pen that crafted some of our favourite theological and fantastical tomes. It opens up the very real struggle of a
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Rosie Adle
Feb 15, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
My thoughts, for what they're worth...

Here's a book about a woman who was determined to pursue her dreams and seek true love and so rationalized an emotional/intellectual affair and a physical leaving of family during a months-long search-for-self across an ocean. I do not have warm regard for Mrs. Lewis if even 10% of this historical fiction is fact-ish.

Sometimes I, too, would rather write poems than prep meals or mend clothes, but that doesn't make me special; it makes me selfish.

Her first
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Abigayle Claire
Feb 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reading the last 100 pages on Valentine's Day was a good call. This book was so full of real life that it was a little disarming. I've never read something quite so broken yet enchanting. Even though this is a work of historical fiction, it's hard to imagine anything happening differently for Joy and Jack.

I loved that, even though the book was imagined to some degree, it didn't shy away from the hard things. The ugly truths. The cold facts. The real beauty of the story came from the masterful d
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Literary Soirée
Jul 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was thrilled to receive an advance copy of this wondrous book from Thomas Nelson-Fiction, as BECOMING MRS. LEWIS has exceeded my every expectation.

This exquisitely written novel is a fictionalized account of the romance between Oxford don C.S. Lewis and New York writer Joy Davidman, who later became his wife. Their’s was an unlikely coupling. He the greatest Christian writer of the 20th Century, she an American Jewish covert to Christianity and the ex-wife of an alcoholic. They met after she d
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Pam Jenoff
Oct 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Henry has artfully novelized the true story of C.S. Lewis and Joy Davidman, the American woman with whom he improbably fell in love before critical illness threatened everything. This book is beautiful and bittersweet.
Jessica
Sep 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I received this book for free as part of an Instagram tour (Just Read Tours specifically) I did to promote the book.

I was interested in reading this book because I am a fan of C.S. Lewis. I hadn’t heard of Joy Davidman before, so I was curious to learn more about her. Please note that although this book is based on real people and real events, it is still a work of historical fiction.

This book was incredible. It beautifully depicted the relationship between Lewis and Davidman. Their romance was
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E.F.B.
This was kind of an impulse buy. It was a book I'd seen around and was curious about, but wasn't on my "buy right now" list because I don't know the author and none of my friends had read it at the time that I bought it. But there it was, sitting all pretty on the display at the bookstore at 20% off as a new release, so I went for it.

This isn't a book for when you're looking for a light, relaxing read. Joy's life was not an easy one and it could be difficult to read about her marriage, faith, a
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Kimberly Dawn
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an enjoyable historical fiction novel which has inspired me to read more works by CS Lewis.

Reading between the lines; however, it is hard to ignore Joy Davidman’s dogged pursuit to win the heart of famous author CS Lewis. According to Joy, she fell in love with him while corresponding with him on the topic of spirituality.

She left behind a deeply troubled first marriage with an abusive and alcoholic writer. When she first sailed across the ocean on an extended stay, she left her two yo
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Aria
Apr 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was good. It was very good, actually. But I don't know....I'm iffy about the content and iffy about the theology.
Kris - My Novelesque Life
RATING: 4 STARS
2019; Thomas Nelson/HarperCollins Christian Publishing
(Review Not on Blog)

Many years ago I picked up a DVD for $3 on C.S. Lewis - the Narnia writer. It was a movie about C.S. Lewis meeting and falling in love with Joy Davidman, a fellow writer and Christian. Since then I have been wanting to read more about the writers and their love story. When I saw this novelized account up for grabs, I jumped at the chance to finally actually read more on Lewis and Davidman. Callihan did such
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MaryBeth's Bookshelf
I spent a lovely weekend getting lost in Becoming Mrs. Lewis! Never has a character walked the pages of a book and seemed so alive to me. The love story between Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis is not the traditional love story. It is filled with determination, confidence, and a deep respect and admiration. I was in awe of their story. It was clearly well researched and lovingly put together by the author.
Mary Monroe
Jan 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was the book Patti was born to write!
☕️Hélène⚜️
DNF page 181. This book was totally boring to me.
Didn’t like the characters or the story. To much description unnecessarily things like landscape etc...
Eva
Oct 23, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-books
After a recent surge of personal interest in the Chronicles of Narnia, I was really looking forward to reading Becoming Mrs. Lewis. However, it wasn't the book for me. The author writes beautifully (I'd like to learn some of her secrets) but the book itself was quite uninteresting and left me depressed instead of uplifted. Joy Davidman led, in many ways, a depressing life and that translated into this book. We didn't get to see much (if any) of her happiness with Lewis - only her struggles and f ...more
Staci
Jan 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
Becoming Mrs. Lewis is about the adult life of Joy Davidson. She is in a difficult marriage and has a tough time seeing her life playing out in a different way. While I found it interesting to learn more about the life of C.S. Lewis, overall this novel didn't keep my interest.

My gratitude to publisher Thomas Nelson for a complimentary copy of the novel. I was not required to post a review and all opinions are my own.
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books read so far in 2019 1 2 May 20, 2019 11:15AM  
Davidman & Lewis' perspicacity? 1 18 Jan 14, 2019 09:35AM  

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“It is not hopeless,” he said with surety. “It is uncertain, and this is the cross God always gives us in life, uncertainty. But it is not hopeless.” 9 likes
“Much of what I’d done — mistakes, poems, manipulations, success and books and sex — had been done merely to get love. To get it. To answer my question: do you love me? . . . From that moment on, the love affair I would develop would be with my soul. [God] was already part of me; that much was clear. And now this would be where I would go for love — to the God in me. No more begging or pursuing or needing. Possibly it was only a myth, Jack’s myth [Til We Have Faces], that could have obliterated the false belief that I must pursue love in the outside world — in success, in acclaim, in performance, in a man.

The Truth: I was beloved of God.

Finally I could stop trying to force someone or something else to fill that role”
8 likes
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