cover image Mothers and Daughters

Mothers and Daughters

Madeleine L'Engle, Maria Rooney. Shaw Books, $19.99 (112pp) ISBN 978-0-87788-561-0

L'Engle, a noted author of children's books (A Wrinkle in Time) and of her own memoirs (The Summer of the Great-Grandmother), collaborates with her adopted daughter, Rooney, on this homage to the relationship between mothers and daughters. Rooney has provided many captivating black-and-white photos to accompany L'Engle's prayers and short prose excerpts, including quotations from her previous writings. The most interesting portion of the book is L'Engle's introduction, where she first describes her own childhood and the parental love she received, and then goes on to explain how she and her husband came to adopt the seven-year-old Rooney after the death of the child's mother and father. Although the photos are charming and L'Engle's deep religious sensibility is obviously sincere, there's not much text, and what there is does little to illuminate the ebb and flow of actual mother-daughter relationships. The author's original Christian prayers and spiritual comments will appeal most to those who share her tradition. (Apr.)