A Wrinkle in Time: The Graphic Novel
by Madeleine L'Engle; Adapted & Illustrated by Hope Larson
Cover Artist: Hope Larson
Review by Gayle Surrette
First Second Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9780374386153
Date: 02 October 2012 List Price $19.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
This year, 2012, is the 50th anniversary of the publication of A Wrinkle in Time which was first published in 1962. I think I first read it not long after it was published. I read it again to my son when he was a child. I then read many of her other books about the Murry children. A couple of years ago, I saw a stage play of A Wrinkle in Time and was surprised to realize how much of the story I still remembered. Earlier this year, I saw the movie, directed by John Kent Harrison (2003). In each incarnation of the story, A Wrinkle in Time has maintained its hold its audience.
Hope Larson is the first to adapt A Wrinkle in Time to graphic novel format. The artwork is mostly black, white, and blue, reminding me of woodcuts. The characters are identifiable as individuals and the background conveys a mood that works well with the story.
Meg Murry's father is missing. Meg has a short temper and, while her twin brothers seem to be doing well, she's getting into a lot of fights. Mostly because she hears what the people in their town and the other school children are saying about her father and her mother. Her mother doesn't seem to doubt that her father will return someday.
Meg's youngest brother, Charles Wallace, is being home schooled. But most of the neighbors and villagers believe he's retarded or worse. This is another sore point for Meg since she and Charles Wallace seem to have a better relationship than she has with her other brothers. One stormy night, Meg meets Charles Wallace's new friend Mrs. Whatsit. A later accidental meeting with Calvin O'Keefe seems to trigger a series of events that lead to Meg, Charles Wallace, and Calvin being sent on a mission to find and free Meg's father.
Larson did an amazing job of adapting the novel to the graphic novel form. The text and, just as importantly, the subtext of the book remains intact. The characters are lively, realistic, and beautifully presented with all their faults and insecurities as well as their strengths. I read the entire book in one sitting; I got so caught up in the story.
This is a great way to revisit a well-loved story in a new form. It's also an ideal way to attract a reluctant reader to a great story via art rather than huge blocks of text.
A wonderful adaptation of a fantastic, classic story and a great way to celebrate the 50th anniversary of A Wrinkle in Time.