Why Are There All These Blank Spaces?

You may notice that in some of my posts there are blank spaces in the reviews. These are spoilers that I've written so I can remember important details of the books when I want to read the sequel. I've made the text a beige color to blend in with the background so you won't accidentally see something you don't want to. If you want to read it, just highlight the section to make the text appear - although you should really just read the book yourself! :)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Diamond of Darkhold

by Jeanne DuPrau

Before reading Graceling I read the forth (and final?) book of Ember: The Diamond of Darkhold by Jeanne DuPrau.

I was apprehensive when starting the book because the previous book in the series was so un-fun! The series begins with the book The City of Ember, continues with The People of Sparks and then with The Prophet of Yonwood. Ember was refreshingly fun and mysterious and a quick read. Sparks began were Ember left off, but did lose a little of the magic of the first. The third book was a prequel to the first two, but the story seemed irrelevant and forced. I didn't like the characters and thought the whole story was a bit hokey. So when I heard there was to be a forth book that returned to the original story I was hopeful the series would be redeemed, but also worried that it might ruin it.

Thankfully, this book captures much of the flavor of the original. It starts up right where Sparks left off, and there is a much more interesting adventure than in the previous two.

One thing missing (as is missing in all the books) is a romance. I can forgive this since the books are for younger readers, but I was still hoping that in this book we would find the characters grown up a few years and perhaps our main two would be paired up. No such luck though, they are only about 6 months older than at the start of the series, and an eventual romance is only hinted at at the end.

Speaking of the end: the last 6 paragraphs are unnecessary. It felt like the author was trying too hard to wrap everything up and make is sound very lyrical or poetic. It also referenced the third book in a rather corny way. So I just went back a few pages and re-read, and then stopped at what I determined the "proper" point. Much better that way. I'd recommend it to all who read it. Other than that a quick and entertaining read. Not quite as good as Ember, but worthy to sit on the shelf beside it.

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