There are some books that you read in childhood that stay with you the rest of your life. I think for many people, A Wrinkle in Time, is definitely one of those books. I have talked with a number of people who have picked it up again as an adult as well and have loved it probably even more than they did when they were a child.
This is definitely true for this year’s Newbery Award winner, Rebecca Stead, for her book When You Reach Me. The book tells the story about a 6th grade girl named Miranda who is also caught up in reading A Wrinkle In Time, that she begins to have her own strange adventures.
In an interview with Amazon.com, Stead says “I loved A Wrinkle in Time as a child. I didn’t know why I loved it, and I didn’t want to know why. I remember meeting Madeleine L’Engle once at a bookstore and just staring at her as if she were a magical person. What I love about L’Engle’s book now is how it deals with so much fragile inner-human stuff at the same time that it takes on life’s big questions. There’s something fearless about this book. It started out as a small detail in Miranda’s story, a sort of talisman, and one I thought I would eventually jettison, because you can’t just toss A Wrinkle in Time in there casually. But as my story went deeper, I saw that I didn’t want to let the book go. I talked about it with my editor, Wendy Lamb, and to others close to the story. And what we decided was that if we were going to bring L’Engle’s story in, we needed to make the book’s relationship to Miranda’s story stronger. So I went back to A Wrinkle in Time and read it again and again, trying to see it as different characters in my own story might (sounds crazy, but it’s possible!). And those readings led to new connections.”
Stead won the Newbery almost 50 years after L’Engle won it for Wrinkle in 1963. The Newbery medal was established in 1922 and is America’s highest honour for children’s books.
Also, check out our inscribed first edition of A Wrinkle In Time. A true treasure for any L’Engle or children’s book collector.