[Book Review] A Wrinkle in Time

A Wrinkle in Time / Madeleine L'Engle
 
I went with an "easy" read for March, shorter than many of my picks and by and large considered accessible to children.  Going in I remembered the concepts surrounding a tesseract, that the children were helped by something like angels, and there being some dark force that they had to combat.

I actually re-read this in two formats, the graphic novel adaptation as well as the traditional novel.  The graphic novel adaptation is very well done, and I highly recommend it.  The religious aspects of the story stood out starkly to me, which is something that I often struggle with encountering.  At the same time, other concepts stood strong on their own, both of metaphysics and philosophy, and I definitely enjoyed both of those.  Worth the reread, and I wish I had read this when I was in the target audience range.

Discussion Fodder:
  • What do you think of the attitudes towards Meg and her mother?  What about attitudes towards Charles Wallace?  How reflective are they of what someone would face today verses in 1962?  How much of their treatment is reflected on gender roles and expectations?
  • The story has definite themes of spirituality and religion, how does that shape the story and your reading of the story?  
  • Calvin remarks that he is liked "For all the most unimportant reasons [...] There hasn't been anybody, anybody in the world I could talk to.  Sure, I can function on the same level as everybody else, I can hold myself down, but it isn't me."  What are the important reasons?  How do we modify ourselves to function around others, what ways are we not ourselves?
  • What is the impact of telling Meg to stay angry, to value her faults, on both the story and readers?
  • In the story Meg goes from searching for her father, believing he has all the answers, to facing reality that parents are fallible.  What ways does Meg grow up, from this realization to other moments.

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