Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L'Engle

Although I've heard of L'Engle, I don't recall ever reading any of her books, even the more famous Wrinkle in Time. I got this book on a whim and now it's one I won't part with.

Circle is book one of the Crosswicks Journals. I had, wrongly, assumed this was fiction but found that this series of books are pulled from L'Engle's personal journals. Judging from the journals alone, what a fascinating, intelligent, and insightful woman! I ended up writing in this book quite a bit and have already went back and re-read passages. She speaks of living out at Crosswicks and co-owning, with her husband, the local general store in a small village. She's a writer who teaches and she does a great deal of teaching in this book, but it feels more like great conversation with a friend. L'Engle also details her failures, the times where her books were rejected by as many publishers as they were sent to. If someone like that has trouble getting published....

While she has been deemed a children's author, she takes a more practical approach and claims she's just a writer. If she feels a subject is too harsh or complicated, she will make it a children's book because children are more open and not yet close-minded to ideas. One of her main topics is how to help children be children and how to not keep trying to "save" them from the world. Very interesting ideas are put forth that make a lot of sense.

Looking forward to reading the other journals in the series.
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