Please support the ASLC with Free Registration and get access to all our reviews
download
Author: Voiklis, Charlotte Jones and Lena Roy
Publisher: Farrar Straus Girous
Year Published: 2018
ISBN: 9780374307646
Grades: Grade 6, Grades 7 to 9

Becoming Madeleine

Reviewed by:

Becoming Madeleine”, was published to coincide with the movie release, March 9, 2018, of the movie, “A Wrinkle in Time”, based on the classic science fiction book for children written by Madeleine L’Engle in 1962.  In addition to this famous Newbery classic, L’Engle also wrote four companion novels to accompany it, fourteen other children’s books, plus adult fiction and non-fiction.

“Becoming Madeleine” is L’Engle’s biography written by her two granddaughters, Charlotte Voiklis and Léna Roy.  These biographers had access to a number of family items and documents not previously available to the public – photographs, diaries, journals, letters plus L’Engle’s early poetry and plays.  The biography follows her life from the early years up to and including the publication of “A Wrinkle in Time”.  The authors felt that their grandmother’s early years – family life, schooling, and her compulsion to write from the age of eleven – would be the period to which young readers, and fans of her novels, would best relate.

With this audience in mind, the writing style is straightforward and easy to read.  The text is double-spaced and of medium font.  On every page there are journal entries from Madeleine’s diaries that give anecdotal accounts of the time period being discussed.  Black and white photographs of the author, her homes, schools, family and friends appear frequently, along with copies of Madeleine’s poetry and excerpts from her letters and daily postcards to her mother.

Today’s students will be interested in Madeleine’s schooling at boarding schools in Switzerland and the United States; many will be able to relate to her shyness, her awkwardness in making new friends and trying to fit in.  In her elementary years, Madeleine was often lonely and felt isolated.  By high school, Madeleine was happier, but she always had a need to write.  Students today will delight in her comments about school, and in her report cards (Madeleine’s teachers did not see her as a good student).  Aspiring writers will be inspired by Madeleine’s persistence, her countless rejections by publishers, but primarily by her devotion to writing…in Madeleine’s words, “I have asked myself frequently of late why writing is so desperately important to me…It is just a necessary function to me like breathing and eating…and is one of my greatest joys. And one of my greatest agonies.” (“Becoming Madeleine”, p. 122)

A timely and fascinating read for all Madeleine L’Engle fans – young and old.



twitter
37588503
A Spark of White Fire: the Celestial Trilogy #1
Mandanna, Sangu
ISBN: 9781510733787
Grades: Grades 7-12

Author Sangu Mandanna seamlessly melds together science fiction, fantasy, and a retelling of the Mahabharata from Indian mythology and folklore…...

This content is for members only. Membership is free so please take a minute to sign up and read the review.

Please Sign Up or Login Register
37901984
Unbroken: 13 Stories Starring Disabled Teens
Nijkamp, Marieke et al
ISBN: 9780374306502
Grades: Grades 7-12

Author and founding member of the We Need Diverse Books movement, Marieke Nijkamp, has compiled an anthology of thirteen short…...

This content is for members only. Membership is free so please take a minute to sign up and read the review.

Please Sign Up or Login Register
9780763697457
The Ruinous Sweep
Wynne-Jones, Tim
ISBN: 9780763697457
Grades: Grades 9 to12

Twice-winner of the Governor General’s Literary Award, Canadian author Tim Wynne-Jones returns with a thrilling mystery intermixed with a unique…...

This content is for members only. Membership is free so please take a minute to sign up and read the review.

Please Sign Up or Login Register
38244389
A Heart in a Body in the World
Caletti, Deb
ISBN: 9781481415200
Grades: Grades 9 to 12

Distinguished author Deb Caletti adds another award to her portfolio with the Michael L. Printz Honors Award for 2018 for this insightful…...

This content is for members only. Membership is free so please take a minute to sign up and read the review.

Please Sign Up or Login Register
© Copyright 2019 all rights reserved.