Madeleine L'Engle, author of many beloved children's books, died yesterday of natural causes.  She was 88.  L'Engle was best known as the author of 1963 Newbury Award winner A Wrinkle in Time and its sequels, following the lives and fortunes of the Murry and O'Keefe families.  She wrote more than sixty books during her life, as well as poetry, plays, and her autobiography.  Many of her works dealt with science fiction and fantastical subjects, usually with religious overtones.

In an interview with Horn Book magazine, she said, "I think that fantasy must possess the author and simply use him.  I know that is true of A Wrinkle in Time.  I cannot possibly tell you how I came to write it. It was simply a book I had to write. I had no choice.  It was only after it was written that I realized what some of it meant.”

In another interview, she said, "Of course I’m Meg," admitting her deep connection with the lead character in the novel.

L’Engle is survived by her two daughters, Josephine F. Jones and Maria Rooney and her granchildren and great-grandchildren.