Book Review: A Wrinkle In Time
By Madeleine L’Engle
I learned to love reading very young.
Even as I was just starting to read, I wanted to read the long books. I wanted to live those wonderful stories in my mind they held in those long pages. I read and re-read everything I could get my hands on. Especially fiction.
I think I have my mother to thank most for this. I could not wait to read the books she read to me for myself. Also, my third grade teacher, Mrs. Hunter, who I can remember starting out the school day with reading to us.
There are some books from those early years of school that stand out.
The Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder (which I’ve learned was actually ghost written by her daughter Rose), The Chronicles of Narnia, and the Mad Scientist Club are some that still come to mind. All books I wouldn’t mind reading again today.
One book above all others made an impression on me. I can remember reading it with amazement. It was like nothing I had ever read of before. I had never known a book could be so wonderful.
That book was A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle.
I think it is safe to say it may have made the largest impression on my reading of all the books I’ve read. I can still remember the feeling I had as I turned each page.
The book was in bad shape – pages were falling out. I had to keep putting them back in, making sure I got them in the right order. I’m not even sure all the pages were there. I can remember trying to put them in the correct order as I lay on top of my bed reading it.
It was if a whole new world opened up.
A Wrinkle In Time was one of the first science fiction or fantasy books I had ever read. Star Wars would have been the only other science fiction ( I know – space opera) book I’d have read at that time and I am not sure I had yet. The whole idea of traveling to other planets and worlds seemed like the ultimate adventure.
If only I could tesser. What a brilliant word.
A Wrinkle In Time is a book that fits into both fantasy and science fiction genres.
Tessering (the method used to travel in the book to other planets) is presented as a scientific theory (sadly fictional). Yet, there are other aspects of the book that are more fantasy. Such as some of the characters being reborn stars. One of the reasons I did not care for the recent movie is it seemed to focus on the fantasy and not the science fiction that was in the book. At least more than I felt it should.
Was A Wrinkle In Time a young adult book before YA was a genre?
Meg, the protagonist, is a teenager. She has teenage flaws much like Harry Potter did in The Chamber of Secrets. I am pretty sure I was in 2nd grade when I read this so I wondered why Meg was so moody. The book was targeted at an audience older than I was when I read it. I’ve read many reviews by adults who’ve read the book and loved it.
I think a good case for the strength of the book was my search in a used bookstore to get a copy to own again. Unable to find it myself, I asked the 20 something girl at the desk. Her first question was did I check in the regular science fiction section as she felt that it sometimes would be put there (there was a Madeleine L’ Engle book there but not this one). I was also surprised that she knew how to spell the author’s name. While they did not have A Wrinkle In Time, I learned that there were many other books by L’Engle and several in the same series as a Wrinkle In Time. So much to read.
I believe just this year, several pages that were taken out in editing, were made public. There has been some debate over what the evil in the book was all about. Some said it was totalitarianism. However, in these lost pages, Megs father indicates it was overvaluing security.
I think that if you are of any age and you like science fiction or fantasy of any kind you would enjoy A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle. It will always be a favorite of mine. I’ve got several more L’Engle books to acquire and read now.