A poignant meditation on the bonds between mothers and daughters—and the inescapable effects of time—from the author of A Wrinkle in Time.
In the second memoir of her Crosswicks Journals, Madeleine L’Engle chronicles a season of extremes. Four generations of family have gathered at Crosswicks, her Connecticut farmhouse, to care for L’Engle’s ninety-year-old mother. As summer days fade to sleepless nights, her mother’s health rapidly declines and her once astute mind slips into senility. With poignant honesty, L’Engle describes the gifts and graces, as well as the painful emotional cost, of caring for the one who once cared for you.
As she spends her days with a mother who barely resembles the competent and vigorous woman who bore and raised her, L’Engle delves into her memories, reflecting on the lives of the strong women in her family’s history. Evoking both personal experiences and universal themes, The Summer of the Great-Grandmother takes an unflinching look at diminishment and death, all the while celebrating the wonder of life.
This ebook features an illustrated biography of Madeleine L’Engle including rare images from the author’s estate.
“Anyone who has dealt with, or will soon deal with, the death of a parent will find some solace, understanding, and companionship in this perceptive book, which is, in the end, more about living than about dying.” —The Washington Post
Madeleine L’Engle (1918–2007) was an American author of more than sixty books, including novels for children and adults, poetry, and religious meditations. Her best-known work, A Wrinkle in Time, one of the most beloved young adult books of the twentieth century and a Newbery Medal winner, has sold more than fourteen million copies since its publication in 1962. Her other novels include A Wind in the Door, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, and A Ring of Endless Light. Born in New York City, L’Engle graduated from Smith College and worked in theater, where she met her husband, actor Hugh Franklin. L’Engle documented her marriage and family life in the four-book autobiographical series, the Crosswicks Journals. She also served as librarian and writer-in-residence at the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine in Manhattan for more than thirty years.