Poet, Seeker, and the Woman Who Captivated C. S. Lewis
by Abigail Santamaria;
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A Bird's Eye View from Eden
The 1st full biography of Joy Davidman, poet, seeker, the woman who captivated C. S. Lewis revealing a powerful writer & thinker
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Although many will recognise Joy from C.S.Lewis' memoirs (Surprised By Joy) and the film about their relationship called Shadowlands, you will be surprised to read that she has her own captivating story to tell. Through years of interviews and research, including previously undiscovered documents Abigail Santamaria has brought this women to life as an accomplished yet troubled novelist, award-winning poet, mother, divorcee, social activist and unrelenting spiritual seeker.
"A biography about the brilliant and brash New Yorker who captured C.S. Lewis's heart was long overdue... There are so many surprises in it that it might even have been titled Surprised by Joy -- if that title weren't already taken." -- Eric Metaxas, New York Times best-selling author of 'Bonhoeffer'.
Joy's quest for meaning took her from atheism, to Dianetics (the controversial pseudo-science/religion of sci-fi writer Ron L. Hubbard), to C.S. Lewis where she found faith, hope and love. Her turbulent life journey will resonate with both romantics and intellectuals.
Like all great biographies, Abigail writes with a passionate enthusiasm for her subject helping readers to peer into Joy's heart and soul. She portrays Joy with refreshing honesty shining a light on all her achievements and misfortunes. By the end of this gripping biography you will be emotionally torn between falling in love with this inspiring, liberal thinker and taken back by her often abrasive personality.
A sensational read for all C.S. Lewis fans and those curious about why he was such a prolific writer.
Joy by Abigail Santamaria was published by SPCK in August 2015 and is our 15331st best seller. The ISBN for Joy is 9780281074273.
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Joy Davidman Gresham is known, if she is known at all, as the wife of C. S. Lewis. Their marriage was immortalized in the film Shadowlands and Lewis's memoir, A Grief Observed. Now, through extraordinary new documents as well as years of research and interviews, Abigail Santamaria brings Joy Davidman Gresham Lewis to the page in the fullness and depth she deserves.
A poet and radical, Davidman was a frequent contributor to the communist vehicle New Masses and an active member of New York literary circles in the 1930s and 40s. After growing up Jewish in the Bronx, she was an atheist, then a practitioner of Dianetics; she converted to Christianity after experiencing a moment of transcendent grace.
A mother, a novelist, a vibrant and difficult and intelligent woman, she set off for England in 1952, determined to captivate the man whose work had changed her life. Davidman became the intellectual and spiritual partner Lewis never expected but cherished. She helped him refine his autobiography, Surprised by Joy, and to write his novel Till We Have Faces.
C.S. Lewis' Unexpected Intellectual Match
"A soul straight, bright and tempered like a sword. But not a perfected saint. A sinful woman married to a sinful man; two of God's patients, not yet cured." - C. S. Lewis, A Grief Observed.
Joy was a Jewish born, Bronx raised, ex-communist divorcee that ended up marrying one of the greatest Christian thinkers of the 20th century. Many will already know her from the film 'Shadowlands' or from C.S. Lewis' touching autobiography 'Surprised by Joy', but what you will not know is that Joy led a fascinating life in a troubled time in American history.
Joy announced she was an atheist at the age of eight, won the Yale Young Poets Award and was often found attending rallies for social justice. Absorbed in the world of literature and poetry she married a fellow New York author/musician and together they struggled through poverty and parenthood, often with the not-so-advised help of alcohol. Seeking answers Joy and her husband become involved in Dianetics (the controversial pseudo-science/religion of sci-fi writer Ron L. Hubbard).
After an extraordinary conversion experience Joy became a Christian, read the works of C.S. Lewis, and began sending him letters. This eventually led to her buying a plane ticket to England and tracking down her intellectual equal she had fallen in love with. Though completely unexpected, their relationship blossomed and the unlikely pair were considered a marvelous marriage of equals by their closest friends. It seems that Joy had a profound effect on her husbands life, so much so that this remarkable love story has even been made into a Broadway play.
Details for Joy
|Page last updated||19th December 2015|
|Author / Artist||Abigail Santamaria|
|Publisher||SPCK (August 2015)|
|Number of Pages||416|