Vanessa's Reviews > A Wrinkle in Time

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
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Sep 11, 2010

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bookshelves: read-in-2010

For my entire adult life, I thought I had read this book as a child and not been that excited by it. Then I read Lizzie Skurnick's Shelf Discovery: The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading and realized I was thinking of another book entirely. And now I'm going a little OCD trying to figure out exactly what book I've been remembering inaccurately for all this time but nevermind that.

Now at least I can say for sure I've read this. What I liked about it was how straight up pro-science it is-Meg's parents are a physicist and a biochemist. I love that L'Engle doesn't pander to children and throws in an array of topics that would have sent me gleefully scurrying to the Encylopedia as a child: quotes from the likes of Seneca, Goethe, Horace, Dante, and Cervantes in their native languages, Einstein, Euclidean geometry, Relativity and The Tempest. I am guessing given the time that this book was written (1962) that L'Engle intended it as an anti-Communist allegory with her messages about the evil and corrosion of conformity. Not to mention that the heroine Meg fights the villain by quoting the Declaration of Independence. I also liked how Meg spends the whole book looking for an adult to right things only to discover she needs to solve the problem herself-an allegory of growing up that isn't too subtle to be missed by younger readers.

What I didn't like was that there were a few too many God and angel references for me. Some girls love the character of Calvin it seems but I found him totally extraneous. Not to mention I've never been a fan of the literary trope, so popular in YA, where two characters meet and instantly have a deep and eternal connection.

L'Engle was insanely prolific. This book was the first in a series of 5 and some of these characters cross over into other books. My copy had a handy chart in the front outlining her characters' family trees and books they appear in. I'm not sure if I'll read the rest of her output but if I were a parent I would buy these books for my daughter.

I also can't help but complain that in the illustration on the cover of my copy Meg is NOT wearing her glasses. A huge faux pas.
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