Pastors’ Wives by Lisa Takeuchi Cullen

Pastors Wives

Review Copy

Pastors’ Wives – Book Review

How would you react if one day, out of the blue, your husband decided to leave Wall Street and go into ministry?

What would your life be like if the man you married was also married to God?

What would it be like to be married to the pastor of a large mega-church?

These are the questions that Catholic writer Lisa Takeuchi Cullen asked when interviewing pastors’ wives for a Time Magazine article several years ago – and these are the questions she explores in her debut novel, Pastors’ Wives.

Pastors’ Wives is the fictional account of three women whose lives converge and intertwine at a Southern evangelical mega-church.

First there’s Ruthie – the Catholic woman who is suffering a crisis of faith after the death of her mother. Ruthie is transplanted from New York to Georgia when her husband accepts a job to serve as the Associate Pastor of Greenleaf Church.

Then there’s Candace – Greenleaf’s “First Lady” herself. Candace will do whatever it takes to protect her church and her charismatic, superstar husband.

Finally, there’s Ginger – Candace’s daughter-in-law – a woman who strives to be a good wife and mother while trying to hide a calamitous past.

If bringing these three women together sounds like the recipe for the perfect storm, you’re right. All it takes is for one chaotic event to bring these ladies to the edge and expose their true selves!

Reading Pastors’ Wives can be likened to watching Desperate Housewives. Just as you would not mistake Susan, Lynette, Gabby or Bree for ordinary, stay-at-home moms, you should not mistake Ginger, Candace or Ruthie as Christian role models who are typical or representative of evangelical women who are married to pastors.

If you realize this going in and do not take the book seriously – if you approach the book purely for its entertainment value and don’t get hung up by any pre-conceived notions you might otherwise have based on the title – then you can sit back and enjoy the story.

Taken in this light, you’ll discover that Lisa has done a skillful job of portraying these three fictional women and their personal struggles as women who are thrust in the public eye as a result of their husband’s role on the pulpit.

This is another interesting book to add to your summer reading list.

About Lisa Takeuchi Cullins

Lisa Takeuchi Cullen

Lisa Takeuchi Cullen was a longtime staff writer for TIME magazine who now develops TV pilots for production companies. Lisa recently sold her first pilot for “The Ordained” to CBS. Born in Japan, Cullen lives in New Jersey with family.

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Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from Litfuse Publicity to review. I was not compensated or required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.

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7 Responses to “Pastors’ Wives by Lisa Takeuchi Cullen”

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  1. hmmm….sounds interesting! HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!

  2. Michelle
    Twitter: Divatude

    This sounds like a very interesting read! It’s been awhile since I’ve read purely for fun – I think I’ve found the next book for that. Thanks!

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1

      Awesome – enjoy! 🙂

      I’m adding some “fun” reading to the mix this season – so look for more great recommendations to add to your summer reading list – as well as books for the kids as well! 🙂

  3. Linda P says:

    I am a pastor’s wife and this book might be just all too real for me to read 🙂 Pastor’s wives are just people, like anyone else. I try not to let “power” corrupt, and stay true and honest with myself and others. I believe in transparency–I guess that is OK, since pastors are said to live in glass houses. hee hee!

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1

      Thank you for sharing Linda – I think it’s hard for a lot of people not to put pastor’s and their wives on pedestals based on their religious/spiritual upbringing. The wives that I have met have been lovely women – but depending on the church, have not always been allowed to be as transparent as they should!

      Based on the reviews I have read, people have either really liked this book or have not connected with it at all. I hope you enjoy it – I think it’s very engaging! 🙂

  4. Thank you for your honest and kind review! You’re absolutely right…it’s a fictional world I portray, and I’d be very happy if your readers would visit with the expectation of a fun, page-turning read. xo Lisa


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