I always find it sad (although somewhat amusing) that many children's authors are treated as if they were inferior writers, looked down upon by those "serious" authors. Madeleine L'Engle is best known for her children's books, and her adult novels and non-fiction are not very well known, but L'Engle knew enough to recognize that it is children who are open to the wonders of the world and can accept incomprehensible logic without requiring proof. Perhaps this is why Jesus insisted on having faith like a child because that is when we understand and accept more easily and openly. And this is part of the journey L'Engle examines in "The Irrational Season," the third of her Crosswicks Journals series.
This third diary follows L'Engle throughout the liturgical year as she examines her life, past and present, and her faith, matching chapters up with different events on the church calendar, beginning and ending with Advent. L'Engle was always a gifted writer, and fans of hers will appreciate the candor and openness with which she laid herself bare in this work. She openly explores her struggles with faith and occasional bouts of atheism (likened to catching the flu at one point, an apt description), but also how she was always able to come back to the truth of her faith. It is an honest and unflinching look at the struggles of maintaining not only a Christian faith but also a Christian attitude in an ever-changing (mostly for the worse) world. L'Engle combines her thoughts on faith with her thoughts about writing, language, family, music, art, friendship, and much more. It is, perhaps, her most intimate work, and one for which fans of hers or anyone who struggles with similar questions will be thankful for.
"The Irrational Season" is a moving portrait of a very human woman who daily struggles to understand her life and her faith in light of a fallen world. L'Engle combines her diary-like entries with her poetry, much of which reflects biblical characters who most likely struggled with similar issues. It is an intimate, powerful, uplifting, and challenging read that is well worth the journey.