When my ten-year-old daughter first saw the movie trailer for Madeline L’Engle’s A Wrinkle In Time she was captivated, but still not sure if she wanted to see it. She’s a little cautious when it comes to movies that look a bit scary or suspenseful. I suggested she check out the book before making a decision and she read the entire novel in two days!
While we’re waiting for the second book in the series to arrive, A Wind in the Door, I’ve collected some other titles to keep her reading, each of which shares a common theme with A Wrinkle in Time — exploring time travel, fantasy adventure, or sibling relationships. These books are perfect for independent readers, aged 8-10 and 11-13 years-old.
For Prospective Time Travelers
1. Joe, Sam, and Fred find themselves transported back to England in the time of King Arthur and his knights through a magical book in Knights of the Kitchen Table by Jon Scieszka (book one of The Time Warp Trio series). This title is a great mix of humor, adventure, and suspense for 8- to 10-year-olds.
2. A Mutiny in Time (book one of The Infinity Ring series) by James Dashner is the first in a series about three kids, Dak, Sera, and Riq, who travel back in time to fix moments in history that have been "broken" by an overly controlling government. Great for kids ages 8-11.
3. In The Legend of Sam Miracle (book one of the Outlaws of Time series) by N.D. Wilson, an unlikely hero, Sam, discovers that his outrageous dreams are in fact past lives and that he must travel through time to save his sister and defeat an evil outlaw intent on world domination before time runs out! This is an exciting read for children ages 8-12.
For Fantasy Adventure Fans
4. In Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones, Sophie Hatter has the misfortune of being the eldest daughter in a world where the eldest is destined to live an uninteresting life. That all changes when Sophie is cursed by a jealous witch and sets off to find Wizard Howl in the hope that he might break the spell. Share this adventure story with children age 9 and up.
5. The Wizards of Once by Cressida Cowell is the first in a new series from the author of How to Train a Dragon, about a wizard named Zar and Wish, a warrior girl. They have been raised enemies but must find a way to work together to fight a deadly witch. This adventurous title is perfect for children ages 8-12.
6. My Diary From the Edge of the World by Jodi Lynn Anderson tells the story of Gracie and her family as they race to escape the Dark Cloud that has approached their home to claim a soul. This is a great read for a 9- to 12-year-old child.
Stories Featuring Strong Sibling Bonds
7. A showcase of sibling love and the resourcefulness of children, book one of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, The Bad Beginning, finds the three very unfortunate orphaned Baudelaire children sent to live with their evil, distant cousin, Count Olaf, who will do anything to get his hands on their inheritance. Ideal for children ages 10-12.
8. In Chris Colfer’s The Wishing Spell (book one of The Land of Stories series), twins Alex and Conner Bailey fall into the fairytale world through a magical book and must work together to source all of the ingredients for a Wishing Spell that might just be their only chance to find their way home again. This book is perfect for children ages 9-12.
9. In book one of Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black’s The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Field Guide, twins Jared and Simon and their sister Mallory move into the decrepit Spiderwick Estate and discover a field guide for fantastical fairies that was never intended for human hands. This whimsical story is great for children aged 9 and up.
Will you be seeing A Wrinkle in Time with your kids? I strongly suggest encouraging them to read the book first, then move on to these great titles. It’s a great way to introduce them to new genres or authors, with the movie making a great reward at any time in the process.