Review: A Circle of Quiet

A Circle of Quiet
A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

By turns a bit rambling and also absolutely fascinating, this journal is the first in a series published by Madeline L’Engle, author of one of my favorite childhood books, A Wrinkle in Time. L’Engle spends many of the pages recounting the years she and her family spent in a house in the country they called Crosswicks. They blend seamlessly into small town life, even opening and operating the town’s general store for many years. She also goes on at length about various insights on people, life, and motherhood that she’s gained over the Crosswicks years. Again, these perspectives were sometimes captivating and sometimes a bit like finding yourself reading every word and idea in someone else’s internal narrative. The reflections weaved in many interesting directions, but they did not always have apparent connective tissue. In several memoirs I’ve read by great authors, I’m always struck by how writing seems to really be a kind of survival mechanism. They literally NEED to get the words down, just like normal people need to breathe oxygen. Getting a peek inside of the writing brain that drove the creation of a story I still cherish made this definitely worth the read. A very nice surprise gift from my co-worker. (thanks, Anna!)

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