Wall Street Journal publishes 3 lost pages of Madeleine L'Engel's A Wrinkle in Time

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Apr 21, 2015

Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time is a classic 1962 YA science fiction novel about 13-year-old Meg Murry, who is sent, along with her young brother and a friend, to another planet by superbeings to rescue her father from an evil called the Black Thing. It's awesome. And now it's even more awesome: Three previously unpublished pages have appeared.

The new pages were discovered by L'Engle's granddaughter, Charlotte Jones Voiklis, and published by The Wall Street Journal (seriously).

The novel is filled with complex ideas such as inter-dimensional travel and tesseracts, as well as more simple (but never simplistic) concepts such as love and family. But these new pages are overtly political.

At one point, Meg's father describes totalitarianism: "It’s like Russia under Kruschev. Or Germany and Hitler. Countries under dictatorships. Franco. Mussolini. Castro. Mao." He also tells her, "'I've come to the conclusion, Mr. Murray said slowly, 'that [security] is the greatest evil there is…. This sick longing for security is a dangerous thing, Meg, as insidious as the strontium 90 from our nuclear explosions.'”

That sharply contrasts with the rest of the book, which is more concerned with geometry than with politics. The pages are well written, as is all of L'Engle's writing, but they don't quite belong. 

According to the Wall Street Journal

They agreed with Ms. Voiklis that cutting it was the right decision, one which strengthened the narrative. The section was too didactic, and would have dated the book, some said. Suzanne Bray, a L’Engle scholar who teaches at Université Catholique de Lille in France, said the section likely was cut precisely because it was “too political, or too obviously political”—something the author generally avoided in her writing.

Still, it's delightful to read more L'Engle, no matter how different it is. See for yourself at the Wall Street Journal

The novel is currently being turned into a screenplay by Frozen co-writer and director Jennifer Lee.

Via ArsTechnica.

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