by Charlotte Jones Voiklis & Jennifer Adams ; illustrated by Adelina Lirius ‧ RELEASE DATE: Oct. 4, 2022

    Life experiences that shaped the author of A Wrinkle in Time (1962).

    Beginning with an early memory of being taken out to view a glorious night sky, this measured, reverent profile follows Madeleine L’Engle, who even as a child had a yen for “big questions.” Through school into adulthood, marriage, and work, she found—in art, in theater, and, most of all, in writing—ways to ask questions and seek answers. L’Engle’s best known book, begun on a camping stopover in Arizona’s Painted Desert, was famously rejected by many publishers but quickly became the classic it still is, prompting generations of readers to find their own ways to ask big questions. Using supple swirls and curves to give her illustrations a lyrical flow, Lirius offers delicately detailed scenes of the White author at different ages, projecting queries in slender thought balloons and alternating between moments of dreamy solitude and in company that is racially diverse. Because of the brevity of the main narrative—though it is supplemented by substantial essays at the end (on L’Engle’s lasting influence, how this particular picture book came to be, and the negative effects of light pollution)—this one isn’t a one-stop for report writers or newcomers; rather, it’s best thought of as a keepsake or a lead-in to the middle-grade biography Becoming Madeleine (2018), which Jones Voiklis, who is L’Engle’s granddaughter, co-authored with her sister Léna Roy. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

    The perfect prelude to a shared reading of the ageless classic. (further reading, timeline) (Picture-book biography. 7-9)

    Pub Date: Oct. 4, 2022

    ISBN: 978-0-374-38848-5

    Page Count: 40

    Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

    Review Posted Online: Aug. 17, 2022

    Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2022

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