A Wind in the Door was a reread. After I got started, I remembered that I wasn’t too impressed with it the first time, either. Don’t get me wrong, I love, love, love, love, love, Madeleine L’Engle, but this one was just not her best of the series. I found myself rolling my eyes more than once. At times, it felt like there was entirely too much exposition before the characters actually got to the heart of the conflict. I also felt that some of the issues that the characters had to face repeated themselves too often in the novel. It felt frustrating. Since I knew the novel was geared towards a younger audience, I tried to ignore the nagging feeling that it was just plain bad writing.
I don’t like to give too much of the plot away, for fear that someone might read it and be upset, so I won’t say anything more than it centers around Charles Wallace and Meg Murry.
Unfortunately, I also realized that my writing style is similar to Madeleine’s and after reading this book again, that thought made me sad and discouraged. So, I don’t think I’ll be reading anything of hers for awhile.
Overall, I think I have to give the book 3 1/2 stars, because it was good, but not great, and because as a children’s book, it deserves a higher rating than I really feel like giving it right now (which is actually around 2 1/2 stars).
***UPDATE: NOV. 21, 2008***
After writing this post, I came across another post I wrote last year when Ms. L’Engle died. I do believe that she was a great writer, and I am learning that she made a profound influence on the way I write now. I want to write like Jasper Fforde and J. R. R. Tolkien, but maybe I am not geared that way. A Wind in the Door is just not a great book, and I don’t want it to be the book that is the basis for my writing style. Maybe I need to reread my favorite, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, just to remind me of why I love her writing, and let that book influence me a little.