My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Meg Murry is trying not to be anxious. She’s home, her parents are working together again & her brother Charles Wallace has started school. But there is a grim air over everything. Charles Wallace isn’t in the best of health & he’s insisting that dragons are nearby. Mrs. Murry is working herself hard over an experiment in molecular biology & can’t spare much extra attention to her children. Everything seems to be a struggle to find the bright & the good. But “the dragon” is soon revealed to be a cherubim that has arrived to aid Meg, Charles Wallace, & their friend Calvin in another fight against agents of the Dark Thing. The three find themselves pitched against despair itself in a place just as foreign & awe-inspiring as their last quest.
While A Wind in the Door continues many of the same themes as Wrinkle, I found myself more captivated by the sequel. The main force the children tackle is once again apathy but its embodiment the Ecthroi are still recognizably frightening to this adult reader, especially in this modern time where feelings of isolation & powerlessness are common. Meg’s maturing here is interesting–she’s clearly learned from her trials in Wrinkle but still struggles with the demands her compassionate quest requires of her. Her struggle to connect & clearly empathize with the dry, unhappy Mr. Jenkins is compelling & a step in the right direction to keep her character from becoming overly sentimental & saintly. (This does mean though that her relationship with Calvin is simply reduced to immediate reciprocal love & comfort with little obstacle.) I’m curious to see if the practical twins become more clued in to the supernatural goings-on swirling around them.