Madeleine L’Engle is probably best known for her novel A Wrinkle in Time, an apparently beloved book as it comes in right at the top, number two on the Top 100 list. This means that not only did it show up on a lot of the lists submitted but that it was also highly ranked on those lists. Sadly, I only read it for the first time in 2008 and it didn’t blow my mind the way that it probably would have when I was a kid. I was looking forward to this reread though and I chose to read Hope Larson’s graphic novel adaptation since I was curious about it as well.
What it’s about: Meg’s physicist father has been missing for years but her mother insists he is simply on a job for the government and will be back someday. And now Meg’s younger brother Charles Wallace has made three strange acquaintances–Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who and Mrs. Which–who are of the same opinion, that Mr. Murry is alive (though probably not well) somewhere far away and he needs their help. The children therefore must trust these beings to get them across the universe by tesser, a bending of time that facilitates space travel.
Age level: Grades 4-6
Best thing: As I read the graphic novel version of Wrinkle, it was necessarily a condensed version of the novel. I actually found it to be much clearer than the original. Larson’s artwork is strange and blue and really quite amazing in the way it jibed with my mental pictures of the story. I highly recommend it to both fans of the original and those new to the novel.
Worst thing: Even more than the first time I read this book, I really disliked Meg. I know that her tenacity and obstinance and temper are supposed to be some of her strengths but seeing her face next to her words somehow made her more annoying to me. I couldn’t see why Cal would start liking her at all.
I still don’t think this book would appeal to everyone but obviously it does appeal to a lot of young readers. Was this a favorite of yours when you were young? Why?
The next book, When You Reach Me, is based on this one so it will be interesting to read them back to back. I think I’m going to try it as an audiobook.