The second volume of a trilogy that starts with A Wrinkle in Time and concludes with A Swiftly Tilting Planet. A fantastic adventure, with child protagonists you can't help but like and root for as they battle evil on a cosmic level. Madeleine L'Engle knew how to write for children! (And adults.) Reading level is 5:3.
"There are dragons in the twins' vegetable garden," announces six-year-old Charles Wallace Murry in the opening sentence of The Wind in the Door. His older sister, Meg, doubts it. She figures he's seen something strange, but dragons--a "dollop of dragons," a "drove of dragons," even a "drive of dragons"--seem highly unlikely. As it turns out, Charles Wallace is right about the dragons--though the sea of eyes (merry eyes, wise eyes, ferocious eyes, kitten eyes, dragon eyes, opening and closing) and wings (in constant motion) is actually a benevolent cherubim (of a singularly plural sort) named Proginoskes who has come to help save Charles Wallace from a serious illness.
In her usual masterful way, Madeleine L'Engle jumps seamlessly from a child's world of liverwurst and cream cheese sandwiches to deeply sinister, cosmic battles between good and evil. Children will revel in the delectably chilling details--including hideous scenes in which a school principal named Mr. Jenkins is impersonated by the Echthroi (the evil forces that tear skies, snuff out light, and darken planets). When it becomes clear that the Echthroi are putting Charles Wallace in danger, the only logical course of action is for Meg and her dear friend Calvin O'Keefe to become small enough to go inside Charles Wallace's body--into one of his mitochondria--to see what's going wrong with his farandolae. In an illuminating flash on the interconnectedness of all things and the relativity of size, we realize that the tiniest problem can have mammoth, even intergalactic ramifications. Can this intrepid group voyage through time and space and muster all their strength of character to save Charles Wallace? It's an exhilarating, enlightening, suspenseful journey that no child should miss.
The other books of the Time quartet, continuing the adventures of the Murry family, are A Wrinkle in Time; A Swiftly Tilting Planet, which won the American Book Award; and Many Waters. (Ages 9 and older)
Madeleine L'Engle has been one of my favorite authors for a while now. This follow-up to "A Wrinkle in Time" is a must-read if you enjoyed the first book. Like its predecessor, it requires either an adult's scientific knowledge or a child's rich imagination to really get into it. This is another book that works on more than one level; if parents and children would read it together, I think they would both get something out of it. If you can wrap your head around the idea of an entire "world" contained in a single cell, you will find this book fascinating.
A delightful fantasy that incorporates science, imagination and life. I enjoyed this little read and look forward to reading the new books in the series. No wonder so many young people pick it up and read it. The fight for the life of Charles Wallace is fierce indeed as Mr. Jenkins, Calvin, Meg, Meg's parents, Dr. Louise and the magical being known as Proginoskes work desperately to achieve this end. Fun!
This is probably the most bizarre children's book I've ever read. I don't even know how a child would understand what was going on. I have a college degree and didn't know what they were talking about (farandolae and mitochondria (things in the blood).
Supposed to be a sequel to A Wrinkle in Time (which I enjoyed) but other than Meg, Charles Wallace and Calvin being in the story, it didn't have a darn thing to do with the first book. This is the end of this series for me as it's way to far out there for my taste.
Meg Murry can't help worrying when her six year old brother, Charles Wallace, announces that there are dragons in the vegetable garden. He's so bright, and so different from other kids, that's he's being bulled at school, and he is also strangely, seriously ill. But Charles is right about the dragons--actually a friendly entity who has come to help and take Charles, Meg and her friend Calvin on a terrifying, wonderful journey into galactic space.