How was I never introduced to this book as a young impressionable child?!
Now I feel an incredible sense of guilt for having bypassed this book with aHow was I never introduced to this book as a young impressionable child?!
Now I feel an incredible sense of guilt for having bypassed this book with a snub of the nose each time I brought a customer over to the Young Readers section of the bookstore at which I worked! It must have been that ingrained sense of hatred towards what schools deemed as “required reading.” (Though I must say, having been forced to read certain classic/modern classics, I had, for the most part, reluctantly enjoyed most of the required reading I encountered. This one must’ve slipped by me at some point and was consigned to be hated forever. Until now.)
Thanks to the buzz over the new Macmillan/Square Fish new 50th Anniversary Edition, I picked up this book assuming that I have a better attention span than I did in elementary school (usually I’m wrong about this) and that it would be good to see what the fuss was all about.
I loved it! And in a way, it’s sort of inspiring me to pick up some of the others that I allowed to slip aside due to my own stubborn refusal to enjoy anything I’m told to enjoy. Like C.S. Lewis. I only mention him because I read the beautiful introduction by Katherine Paterson in this new edition of A Wrinkle in Time which introduced me to the themes of “Christian theology and a cosmic struggle between good and evil” before reading the book and before I had a chance to figure them out on my own. By planting the seed, I was able to not ignore the Christian presence (as I often do albeit with some inner conflict – “Hmm, this is starting to sound like it could relate to religion in a way… Naw, I don’t think they would do that… But maybe…”) By acknowledging the underlying spiritual themes rather than dismissing or ignoring them, I think its broadens the reading experience regardless of whether or not you relate to them. That being said, I was kind of disappointed in the end when there was a small reference or two related to “Him” and more directly “God” because I prefer my hidden allusions to be… well – hidden. (God forbid – pun intended ;) - a great book suddenly falls under “Christian Fiction” and is lost to the much wider masses.)
Nonetheless, I now vow to take back my stubborn aversion to all things “required/suggested/recommended” and all things sci-fi, all things unbelievable, can’t-be-possible, young children with old brains, creatures from outer space?! and the like. Just don’t hold me to it. :)
ADDITION: So I wrote the review a little prematurely and have just now finished the afterword by L'Engle's granddaughter. I came across this passage which is a prime example of why I prefer religious allusions to be either hidden or overtly expressed...
While the majority of the feedback my grandmother received was positive, she also received expressions of fear and even hate. A Wrinkle in Time has been one of the most-contested and most-often-banned books in libraries and schools in the United States. Gran was baffled by the charges of some Christian groups that it glorified witchcraft and new age spirituality. On the other hand, she was equally flummoxed by criticism that it was too overtly Christian. For the fundamentalists, the book was certainly "heretical." For literalists who are fearful of the essential metaphorical nature of language, it was anathema. She antagonized the same crowd that would later want to burn the Harry Potter books.
...or on second thought, maybe I just wish people could read with an open mind. But I guess that's like asking for Peace on Earth....more
I feel like I'll get shit for this rating but... not impressed. I just expected more. I love me some Bardugo and especially Bardugo world-building butI feel like I'll get shit for this rating but... not impressed. I just expected more. I love me some Bardugo and especially Bardugo world-building but I couldn't get my heart as into this as I wanted to. I do think the last 100 pages or so made up for a lot of less-interesting beginning and middle....more