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Literature Connections Sourcebook: A Wrinkle in Time and Related Readings
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June 2018: Magical Realism > Wrinkle in Time - still four *s for my inner child

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message 1: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) I would not define this as 'Magical Realism' but it was on the Listopia, and two other of my groups are reading it together, so it's an easy way for me to satisfy a difficult tag.

This edition, A Wrinkle in Time, has related readings, which are probably more helpful to a children's discussion group than they were to me, but I did enjoy them anyway.

I've loved this since I was a child. I know there are lots of reasons that adults today can't appreciate it, and that many young readers won't, either. But it is written with grace and wit, and is a fast, dramatic read, and it does explore some interesting Big Ideas. I feared that it wouldn't be a good re-read for me, but I let my inner child join in, and we had a lot of fun.

Btw, though this time the Christian message seems pretty heavy, I didn't even notice it the first few times I read it, when I was a child & young teen. Back then I understood Jesus to be just one of many thinkers, (the bit where he was mentioned along with Gandhi, Euclid, etc.), and I understood the "He" to be a generic higher being that could be disregarded, and I focused on the ideas of Love and Freedom and Courage.

I particularly was taken by the idea that form is irrelevant. Whether one wears piles of scarves and boots, or has trouble materializing beyond a shimmer, or is a furry and blind Aunt Beast, or looks like a kindly gentleman but happens to have red eyes doesn't matter. What matters is what one actually *is* inside.

I was also enchanted by the idea of a mother who could also be gorgeous and could also be a scientist still sufficiently dedicated enough to her work to bring the stew into the lab.

And the idea of a father who, despite all his talents, courage, & love, could *not* solve all the family's problems. The children not only needed to rescue him, but they also basically needed to do the job that, in most traditional storybooks, would have been his to do.


message 2: by Amy N. (new)

Amy N. | 256 comments I still love this book and I think I always will. As a Christian myself I appreciate that it doesn't portray goodness and light as exclusive to Christians or even religious figures-- one of my favorite lines in this book is Meg's exasperated, "Oh, Euclid, I suppose." It says so much about her character in just four words: of course she would see math as one of the lights fighting the darkness (which it is) but she's so done with all the philosophizing and wants people to get to the point-- she's still an impatient child at that point. I related to Meg so much as a kid but I also kind of looked up to her because she's smarter than I ever was and has a lot more guts than I do even now.

I could go on, but I'm glad you were able to enjoy it as an adult.


message 3: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) That quotation is, indeed, marvelous. Thank you for adding it to this thread. And thank you for sharing your ideas.


message 4: by Amy (new)

Amy | 9324 comments Forgive an incredibly ignorant question. I either read a Wrinkle in Time when I was 8, or I never read it at all. It has a Christian theme or elements? I am reminded of a funny story. My music group was talking about the song this little light of mine, which everybody knew from church and Bible school. I was laughing, because as the owner Jewish women in the room, I never thought of it that way. I never saw it as religious, or belonging to a particular religion. I knew that song from school or camp or life, and it always moved me. It moves me still. But I never saw it as religious. I guess if I had grown up singing in church I would have. But we have our own music that I deeply relate to. Anyway, I was just surprised at reading that this book had some Christian elements that I either missed, overlooked, or never knew about, or actually never read the darn thing. Jason, forming a new question for you, based on a recent conversation we were having and thinking about these themes. Will send it over. But meanwhile, I find this interesting. Maybe we will all talk about it more.


message 5: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Mention of 'doing his work' and of Jesus and of God.... a child raised agnostically (me) or Jewish is forgiven for not paying attention to the references as they're kind of in the background, kind of not interesting.

Kids are good at ignoring what they don't want to see. Unless, as you say with your neat story of the 'camp' song, it has a certain connotational relevance... https://genius.com/Traditional-folk-t... has no mention of Jesus or anything....
Similarly Chronicles of Narnia - as a child I had no idea they were so Christian....


message 6: by Jason (new)

Jason Oliver | 2097 comments Love Wrinkle In Time. This and The Giver were the first book to get me to think beyond my perceived universe.


message 7: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) I do think "The Giver" is a good introduction to SF. Or should I say, "was" instead of "is" - maybe kids nowadays are exposed to plenty of "Speculative Fiction" & plenty of creative ideas about how life, culture, etc. could be very different.

I wonder what I would have thought of "The Giver" had I read it as a child. But I'm too old - it won the Newbery when I was 32 and already had two children... so when I did read it, I had an entirely different perspective on it than the target audience would....


message 8: by Jason (new)

Jason Oliver | 2097 comments Cheryl wrote: "I do think "The Giver" is a good introduction to SF. Or should I say, "was" instead of "is" - maybe kids nowadays are exposed to plenty of "Speculative Fiction" & plenty of creative ideas about how..."

The Giver is still one of my all-time favorites and one of the few books I have read more than once.


message 9: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Oh yes. I've reread it myself, and I do recommend it. Glad to know that it is doing so well with a more contemporary reader. Thanks!


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