A Wrinkle in Time: Book 1 in the Time Quintet
Highly Recommended Reading..
Genre: Middle Grade/Children’s/Science Fiction/Fantasy.
Meg Murry is an eighth grade mathematical genius whose teachers believe she’s beyond inept because she doesn’t understand how to work out problems their way. As a young child her mathematician father and chemist mother exposed her to learning beyond her years. But since her father’s disappearance when she was a little girl, nothing has gone right. One dark and stormy night she learns the impossible from a wet late-night wanderer who ends up on her backdoor step. Through this unlikely acquaintance she eventually learns that her father is still alive and she has a chance to save him. The problem is, he’s no longer on this planet. Dealing with the advanced idea of the tesseract, which wrinkles time and space, he’s trapped on another world on the other side of The Black Thing – a source of evil many in the celestial world have fought and fallen before. Lucky for Meg her younger brother has befriended a motley crew old women who are more than what they seem and Meg has a slim chance at finding her father again.
When my fifth grade teacher read this to my class, and I heard it for the first time, I fell in love with the characters and their adventures. Since that time I have read and re-read this book nearly a dozen times and it never fails to wring my heart and capture my imagination.
As an adult I can see clearly the advanced scientific elements L’Engle is basing this fantastical story around. The idea of the tessser or tesseract – wrinkling time and creating a kind of wormhole through space – is not new or proven but it was cutting edge in its day and remains a viable theory in the scientific community. The seamless way in which L’Engle weaves this science into a world no different from our own and transforms reality into something beyond imagination is the heart of what good science fiction brings its readers.
Above all, my favourite aspect of the book is the strange old women who guide Meg, her younger brother Charles Wallace, and their unlikely high school companion, Calvin, through outer space. Mrs. Who, Mrs. Whatsit, and Mrs. Which are not your standard little old ladies. The mystery that surrounds them, the fact that Charles Wallace trusts them without reserve, and the wonders we learn about their true identities as the book progresses serve as catalysts in the fight against evil, the search for a lost father, and the eternal hope that love brings.
Readers of any age with an open heart and an equally open mind will relish in this timeless children’s classic over and over again.
Review by M.J. Moores, OCT. Author. Editor. Freelance Writer.
Categories: Book Reviews