There is always an uptick in holds and checkouts when a book gets a live-action adaptation. Ava DuVernay’s upcoming big-screen translation of beloved children’s classic A Wrinkle In Time is no exception. Copies of the first book are flying off shelves, along with the less well-known sequels in Madeleine L’Engle’s Time Quintet.
I am not one of the people who grew up with this book, sadly. Unlike The Secret Garden, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Alice In Wonderland, this is a time-honored classic of children’s literature that somehow passed me by when I was little. As such, my perspective on this novel won’t be the same as for someone who grew up with the story. Still, one of the best tests of time is to see if a book originally written for children holds up to adult scrutiny. I have always believed that any piece of literature worth reading again should be worth reading regardless of your age when you first pick it up.
That certainly is the case for A Wrinkle In Time. If you don’t know the story, it follows a brother and sister on a quest across time and alternate dimensions to find their father. The father, unbeknownst to them until now, has been secretly working on a project called the Tesseract to make extra dimensional travel possible for the government. Traveling across these dimensions is called “wrinkling,” which is where the title comes in. It’s a wildly imaginative and unique quest, filled with strange and dangerous creatures including a disembodied force of evil that appears as a black shadow. The surreal landscapes described in the book make me wonder how in the world someone could film it at all, even with the strides in visual special effects we’ve made in movies so far. As such, I’m anxious and excited to see how DuVernay handles it.
In order, the books in Madeleine L’Engle’s Time Quintet are:
4: Many Waters
Whether you are revisiting the series for nostalgia, or coming to it for the first time, or just curious about the upcoming movie, check out the collection from the Chesapeake Public Library!