Once Upon a Wardrobe: Book summary and reviews of Once Upon a Wardrobe by Patti Callahan

Once Upon a Wardrobe

A Story of Narnia and a Sister's Love

by Patti Callahan

Once Upon a Wardrobe by Patti Callahan X
Once Upon a Wardrobe by Patti Callahan
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  • Published Oct 2021
    320 pages
    Genre: Literary Fiction

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Book Summary

When college student Megs approaches author C. S. Lewis with her younger brother's request to find out if Narnia is real, he instead takes her on a magical journey through the moments in his life that led to his greatest creation.

Megs Devonshire, on a scholarship at Oxford, is brilliant with numbers and equations. She prefers the dependability of facts—except for one: the brother she loves with all her heart doesn't have long to live. When George becomes captivated by a brand-new book called The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and begs her to find out where Narnia came from, there's no way she can refuse.

Despite her timidity about approaching the famous author, who is a professor at her school, Megs soon finds herself taking tea with the Oxford don and his own brother, begging them for answers. What she receives instead are stories ... little-known tales from different periods in Mr. Lewis's life, which she takes home to George.

Why won't Mr. Lewis just tell her plainly what George wants to know? The answer will reveal to Meg many truths that science and math cannot, and the gift she thought she was giving to her brother—the story behind Narnia—turns out to be his gift to her, instead: hope.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Callahan once again visits the life and works of C. S. Lewis in this enlightening novel of logic and imagination, faith, and reason ... This enchanting novel of faith and hope is a must-read for fans of C. S. Lewis. Readers will be eager to return to the world of The Chronicles of Narnia with new insights." - Library Journal, starred review

"Heartfelt characters will win over sentimental readers. Callahan's fans will love this." - Publishers Weekly

"This is a heartwarming tale about the transformative power of books, with engaging and detailed descriptions. George's earnestness and imaginative nature uplift his family and will charm any reader who enjoys looking at the stories behind our favorite childhood stories." - Booklist

"Devoid of bells and whistles, the story moves with ease taking on a childlike tone, particularly in scenes with George's character...Once Upon a Wardrobe is a beautiful follow-up to Becoming Mrs. Lewis. It's a love letter to books and stories with a meaningful message. Megs and her family learn that fantastical tales are more than mere ways to appease young children. Stories are nourishment for the souls that need joy the most, and sometimes they're the only thing that can help us understand life." - The Washington Post

"The broadly researched Once Upon a Wardrobe is written in enchanting language apropos to the setting's time and place and regales the reader with little known tidbits pertaining to the inspiration behind The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. With elegant prose, Callahan invites the reader to intuit creativity's source. Once Upon a Wardrobe is a captivating story for all ages; a standalone book combining fact, and fantasy, and its peek behind the curtain crafting is an important adjunct to C. S. Lewis's Narnia chronicles." - New York Journal of Books

This information about Once Upon a Wardrobe was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Patti Callahan

Patti Callahan is the New York Times, USA TODAY, and Globe and Mail bestselling novelist of fifteen novels, including Becoming Mrs. Lewis, Surviving Savannah, and Once Upon a Wardrobe. A recipient of the Harper Lee Distinguished Writer of the Year, the Christy Book of the Year, and the Alabama Library Association Book of the Year, Patti is the cofounder and cohost of the popular web series and podcast Friends & Fiction. Author website: www.patticallahanhenry.com.

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