Now a USA TODAY and Publishers Weekly bestseller!
“Patti Callahan seems to have found the story she was born to tell in this tale of unlikely friendship turned true love between Joy Davidman and C. S. Lewis, that tests the bounds of faith and radically alters both of their lives. Their connection comes to life in Callahan’s expert hands, revealing a connection so persuasive and affecting, we wonder if there’s another like it in history. Luminous and penetrating.” —Paula McLain, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Wife
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, not love. Love, after all, wasn’t holding together her crumbling marriage. Everything about New Yorker Joy seemed ill-matched for an Oxford don and the beloved writer of Narnia, yet their minds bonded over their letters. Embarking on the adventure of her life, Joy traveled from America to England and back again, facing heartbreak and poverty, discovering friendship and faith, and against all odds, finding a love that even the threat of death couldn’t destroy.
In this masterful exploration of one of the greatest love stories of modern times, we meet a brilliant writer, a fiercely independent mother, and a passionate woman who changed the life of this respected author and inspired books that still enchant us and change us. Joy lived at a time when women weren’t meant to have a voice—and yet her love for Jack gave them both voices they didn’t know they had.
At once a fascinating historical novel and a glimpse into a writer’s life, Becoming Mrs. Lewis is above all a love story—a love of literature and ideas and a love between a husband and wife that, in the end, was not impossible at all.
“Patti Callahan Henry breathes wondrous fresh life into one of the greatest literary love stories of all time . . . The result is a deeply moving story about love and loss that is transformative and magical.” —Pam Jenoff, New York Times bestselling author of The Orphan’s Tale
“I was swept along, filled with hope, and entirely beguiled, not only by the life lived behind the veil of C. S. Lewis’s books but also by the woman who won his heart. A literary treasure from first page to last.” —Lisa Wingate, New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours
“Profoundly evocative, revealing an intimate view of a woman whose love and story had never been fully told . . . until now . . . Becoming Mrs. Lewis is a tour de force and the must-read of the season!” —Mary Alice Monroe, New York Times bestselling author of Beach House Reunion
"Patti Callahan somehow inhabits Davidman, taking her readers inside the writer’s hungry mind and heart. We keenly feel Davidman’s struggle to become her own person at a time (the 1950s) when women had few options . . . An astonishing work of biographical fiction." —Lynn Cullen, bestselling author of Mrs. Poe
"Patti Callahan breathes life into this fascinating woman whose hunger for knowledge leads her to buck tradition at every turn." —Diane Chamberlain, New York Times bestselling author of The Dream Daughter
'This book is a work of art. Intelligent. Witty and charming. Becoming Mrs. Lewis is a stunning foray into the wilds of faith--from doubt and discovery, to the great adventure of living it out. Patti Callahan's invitation into Joy and Jack's love story is as brilliant as the lives they led. I'm left as spellbound as the first time I met Aslan . . . with these characters now just as dear.' --Kristy Cambron, author of The Ringmaster's Wife and the Lost Castles series
'Layered with personal reflection, poignant life events, and the Davidman-Lewis journey toward respect and love, Becoming Mrs. Lewis may very well become a literary classic of its own.'
'In Becoming Mrs. Lewis, Callahan peels back the curtain and allows a glimpse into Joy Davidman's extraordinary life and her love and marriage with C. S. Lewis. With captivating prose, Callahan carries the reader across the ocean from New York to Oxford and into the private heart of this tender love story.' --Katherine Reay, bestselling author of Dear Mr. Knightley and The Austen Escape
'Becoming Mrs. Lewis illuminates the raw humanity of seeking faith in a distrustful world. We've heard C. S. Lewis's narrative. Here, Callahan keenly demystifies poet Joy Davidman's story and in the telling, shows us the power of a greater love. I was wonderstruck by this novel.' --Sarah McCoy, New York Times and international bestselling author of Marilla of Green Gables and The Baker's Daughter