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Summary

For many years an atheist, C. S. Lewis vividly describes the spiritual quest that convinced him of the truth and reality of Christianity, in his famous autobiography.

"In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in, and admitted that God was God...perhaps the most dejected and reluctant convert in all England." Thus Lewis describes memorably the crisis of his conversion.

Surprised by Joy reveals both that crisis and its momentous conclusion that would determine the shape of Lewis' entire life.

©1955 C. S. Lewis Pte Ltd (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic reviews

"He is admirably equipped to write spiritual autobiography for the plain man, for his outstanding gift is clarity. You can take it at two levels, as straight autobiography, or as a kind of spiritual thriller, a detective's probing of clue and motive that led up to his return to the Christianity he had lost in childhood." (Isabel Quigley, Sunday Times)

What listeners say about Surprised by Joy

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Joy ful surprise

Now that I come to write this review i find i can't remember how i found this book or why I decided to read it. I am glad that I did and I will again. At times it was a little difficult, not the writing but following a description of a time and class i know nothing about. The quotes in german,french,Latin and Greek although lost on me, didn't really spoil the story. I feel the narrator a perfect choice, his voice and tone are suitable to the era, also his emotion in the reading at times made me feel i was listening to an old radio broadcast of c.s. Lewis himself. A book I'll keep in my library to listen again and again to find the parts i missed this time.

8 people found this helpful

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A genuine pleasure to read .

CS Lewis' books are a genuine pleasure to read and this reader is simply outstanding. Highly recommended.

4 people found this helpful

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Beautiful

impossible to put down, captivating, illuminating. i want to listen to it over again straight away.

3 people found this helpful

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Hoped for more


Appears that a boyhood obsession with Animal Land becomes in adulthood Narnia. Not fully biography yet glimpses of background to Lewis becoming a Christian, not a Damascene event but logical reasoning I hoped for more on his Christian life a sense of rushed final chapters. Good narrative voice.

2 people found this helpful

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An insightful book into the conversion of CS Lewis

Great narrator, love CS Lewis! A really insightful book into his conversion to Christianity. Would recommend.

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Enjoyed it very much

It is a long book but was must enjoyable.
The story is full of ups and downs.
Having not read any of C S Lewis before I am keen to read some more of his books

1 person found this helpful

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Fantastic reading, amazing work.

The reader was amazing and Lewis' story of himself was riveting and inspiring. Highly recommended.

1 person found this helpful

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good insight on a journey of discovery.

lewis' knowledge and intellect shines through the words. a personal journey and historical document in one.

1 person found this helpful

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An interesting read but weighted strangely

Interesting book and enjoy all of CS Lewis's so far, however I felt the first half dragged on and the second could have been drawn out longer than it was

2 people found this helpful

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Surprised by Joy

love C S Lewis's works. This was very enjoyable and very well narrated, excellent

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  • Kerry
  • 22-03-17

A lot to digest

I enjoyed listening to tge story of Lewis's conversion and I thought it was well read. But I found it difficult to digest in this format. I would have got more out of it if I had read it myself.