Madeleine L’Engle

Obituaries: Publishers Weekly today has an obituary for Madeleine L’Engle.

Author Madeleine L’Engle died last night in Connecticut, at the age of 89. Best known for her 1963 Newbery Award winner A Wrinkle in Time and its sequels, L’Engle was the author of more than 60 books for adults and young readers, most of which were published by FSG. This spring, the Square Fish imprint of Holtzbrinck reissued L’Engle’s Time Quintet in new editions.

This is so spare; it does nothing to talk about a woman who wrote a book that absolutely shaped who I am. Wrinkle in Time is one of those books that I still keep reading. I think I might need to read it now, then I can imagine that she’s just on the other side of a tesseract.

Edited to add: The New York Times has an enlightening article about her.

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8 Responses

  1. momk

    “Stories make us more alive, more human, more courageous, more loving. Why does an anybody tell a story? It does indeed have something to do with faith, faith that the universe has meaning, that our little human lives are not irrelevant, that what we choose or say or do matters, matters cosmically.”
    ~ Madeleine L’Engle

  2. Laura

    The article in the New York Times says that Wrinkle was rejected 26 times before it finally saw publication. That story was so real to me that it made writing a necessity for me. I can’t imagine that sort of determination.

  3. Slushmaster

    I read that in third grade and didn’t even realize it was speculative literature. I just knew it was really cool. For whatever reason I never set out to find more of her writing or other stuff like that, so it would be another two years before I started reading fantasy, when I discovered Conan.

    Given this, I tend to point to Conan as my introduction to speculative fiction, because it was this character that pulled me down the path I’m still walking.

    But technically speaking, L’Engle was the first. And I still remember so much of it quite clearly. She will be missed.

  4. Fabulous Girl


    Just found out and cannot quite believe it is true. I read so many of her books so many times, and was just talking about her with a wise, thoughtful man in Montana.

    “In this body, in the town of Spirit, there is a little house shaped like a lotus, and in that house there is a little space. There is as much in that little space within the heart as there is in the whole world outside.”

  5. bluesaffron

    I’ve always remembered her quote from Newsweek, just after the movie A Wrinkle in Time was released.

    NEWSWEEK: So you’ve seen the movie?
    Madeleine L’Engle: I’ve glimpsed it.

    And did it meet expectations?
    Oh, yes. I expected it to be bad, and it is.


    Some images are just too magnificant and wild to ever be captured with complete satisfaction on film.