Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Book Review: The City of Ember

Today I wanted to give you my thoughts on The City of Ember, by Jeanne DuPrau. I read the book long before the movie came out, and of course since then everything has been re-released, so here is the newest book blurb I could find:

NOW A MAJOR motion picture starring Bill Murray, Tim Robbins, Martin Landau, Saoirse Ronan, and Harry Treadaway! This tie-in edition of The City of Ember features a movie-art cover and an 8-page photo insert. Jeanne DuPrau’s instant classic tells the story of the great, underground city of Ember, designed as a last refuge for the human race. But when the storerooms run out of food and the lights begin to fail, it’s up to two teens, Lina and Doon, to decipher the fragments of an ancient parchment and find a way out of Ember.

Ms. DuPrau is an award winning author, and yet I did not see the magic that most people seem to find in this book. Admittedly the story is intriguing and it did capture my attention, but something happened along the way and honestly I don't remember finishing the book. It has been several years since I picked this book up, but the number one thing that I remember is that the characters were sort of boring. In all honestly, my opinion may be different now, but who knows. Ultimately I thought the story was worth reading enough that I thought that I would share it with you, but it isn't one of my favorite books. 

The City of Ember is the first book in a a series known as Books of Ember. Copies can be found just about anywhere - stores, libraries, online - and in multiple reading formats. Overall I would give this book a four-star rating, because it is a great story, but there is still a little something that is lacking. 

Have you read this book? If so, what did you think? Does this sound like something you would be interested in? Let me know!

- Heidi Nicole Bird


  1. I read it when it was first announced that it would be made into a film and Bill Murray would star. I love Bill Murray and knew I would want to see it when it came out - not in the theater, of course, but later on down the road. So I read the book because I hate watching a movie before reading the book.

    As it was I didn't hate the book. It felt rather...clumsy. I didn't care enough for the main characters to really root for them. I like the idea of the story - it's an "ark story" and as a rule, I generally like those but like you mention above there was something missing that I just couldn't place.

    1. Thanks for your comment Heather! I like the way you said it, that it was clumsy and you didn't really feel like rooting for the characters. That's exactly how I felt!