Kumon Staff Pick: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
Grade/Kumon Level of book: 6th-8th Grade / Level G
Why do you personally enjoy this book?
A Wrinkle in Time is not just a fun fantasy adventure. I enjoyed seeing each character learn and grow from the adventures they experience throughout the book. Meg Murry starts off feeling inadequate in a family full of genius minds; gradually, she gains more confidence and realizes her own potential. It also explores Meg’s relationships with her brothers, her friendship with Calvin O’Keefe, as well as their interplanetary travel through tesseracts (a term that L’Engle invented to explain a concept similar to that of wormholes). The book also features Meg’s brother Charles Wallace Murry and his own journey alongside Meg and Calvin.
Why do you feel children enjoy this book?
Children will enjoy the fantasy elements of the book, and they will be amused by Charles Wallace, his unique perspective, his funny remarks, and how he interacts with each character and reacts to each situation he encounters. Children may also relate to Meg’s relationships with her family and friends and how she evolves and grows throughout the novel. There are also many amusing and exciting events that keep readers engaged and interested in finding out what will happen next.
Readers especially interested in the Murry adventures can continue with three other books: A Wind in the Door, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, and Many Waters.
What skills and/or values might children gain by reading this book?
The importance of family – in particular, the importance of familial love – is the center of this book and the subsequent books in this series. Love between parents and children and between siblings is a prominent theme. Many children will be able to relate to the Murry family dynamics. Readers may also relate to Meg’s feelings of being different from everyone she knows, which cause her to feel self-conscious and awkward with both her peers and her family. Eventually she grows to understand her family and friends better and to understand and embrace her uniqueness. This is a lesson from which all children can benefit.