Letters: On 'A Wrinkle In Time'

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Melissa Block and Robert Siegel read listener's responses to a profile of the classic children's book, A Wrinkle In Time.


This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.


I'm Robert Siegel. And now, we're going to tesser back to a story you heard yesterday.


MADELEINE L'ENGLE: (Reading) Suddenly, the three of them were there: Mrs. Whatsit, with her pink stole askew; Mrs. Who, with her spectacles gleaming; and Mrs. Which, still little more than a shimmer.

SIEGEL: The voice of the late Madeleine L'Engle reading from her classic book "A Wrinkle in Time."

BLOCK: It's the story of a young girl's quest to rescue her father from the mind-controlling clutches of a disembodied brain called IT on a distant planet. She has help from those three supernatural beings you just heard about who transport themselves to the fifth dimension, the tesseract. And judging from our inbox, my story about the book's 50th anniversary transported many of you back to your childhoods.

SIEGEL: In fifth grade, Eric Francis of North Little Rock, Arkansas, wrote about "A Wrinkle in Time" for his first ever book report. And he tells us this: I remember being so upset that my teacher deducted points for capitalizing both letters in IT and for repeating a word in central-central intelligence. It was after I explained that that's how they were used in the book that she told me I should have used a footnote. And it was after I gave her a blank stare that she explained to me what a footnote was.

BLOCK: Julia Vosper of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, was reminded of sixth grade when she chose to write directly to Madeleine L'Engle as part of a class assignment. She says this: I had the temerity to tell Ms. L'Engle that she was, in fact, my second favorite author, next to Louisa May Alcott. She was so very gracious in her reply, sharing with me that when she was my age, Louisa May Alcott was also her favorite author and that she and Ms. Alcott shared the same birthday. And Ms. Vosper concludes: Her letter meant the world to me. And for that, I not only thank Ms. L'Engle but also my sixth grade teacher Ms. Hoppensburger and NPR for reminding me of this treasured correspondence.

SIEGEL: And we appreciate your correspondence. You can write to us at npr.org. Click on Contact Us at the bottom of the page.

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