When You Reach Me
by Rebecca Stead
published by Wendy Lamb Books
Newbery Award, 2009
I’ve just read this fabulous story for the third time!
Sixth grader Miranda lives in New York City, in the same building as her good friend, Sal. They are street-savvy kids, knowing how to stay safe, and avoid the crazies, like the guy under the corner mailbox.
Then Sal gets punched for no apparent reason, and shuns Miranda’s company. Miranda gets a mysterious note scribbled on a tiny piece of paper that says:
I am coming to save your friend’s life, and my own.
I ask two favors. First, you must write me a letter.
Interwoven through this wonderful story is the plot of Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, Miranda’s favorite book. Miranda, and the readers, ponder the conundrum of time travel. Would you see yourself arrive before you left?
The characters, sub-plots, and ultimate mystery of Stead’s book make for a rich and fascinating read.