I probably read A Wrinkle in Time for the first time when I was about eight or nine years old, and I have to say that for a book born the same year I was, it seems to have aged quite well.
I was pleased to remember so much about the characters and the main story, though as a shy, young misfit myself, somewhat like Meg Murry, I imagine her personality resonated with me quite a lot at the time. As an adult, and a parent now, I was captivated by Meg’s drive to find her father, her devotion to her oddly distant mother and the camaraderie with her siblings, despite their distinctly different personalities.
What surprised me most on this reading was how much I disliked Charles Wallace. I suppose to a younger reader, he would perhaps come across as having a bit of an alien affect, and therefore not seem discordant, compared to the other alien beings in the story. On reading again, I couldn’t get over how very jarring his persona was. I do think this was intentional on L’Engle’s part and I would guess that it becomes less problematic as he grows older in the subsequent books in the series.
L’Engle does an amazing job of telling a story that is actually quite horrifying, yet never leaves a reader feeling an existential dread that all hope is lost. We should all be so lucky to have a Mrs Whatsit, a Mrs Which, or a Mrs Who to guide and protect us in times of stress. This overarching sense of love, care and protection is, to me, what makes A Wrinkle in Time such a timeless classic.