Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Diamond of Darkhold

Title: The Diamond of Darkhold
Category: Science Fiction
Grades: 4-8
Author: Jeanne DuPrau
Publisher: Random House
Date: 2008
Pages: 285

Doon, Lina and the rest of the people of Ember have been working hard to rebuild their lives and community above in the town of Sparks.  Adjusting and providing for themselves in new ways has proven to be difficult.  When Doon purchases an old book written by the Builders from a roamer, he discovers they left more behind than an escape route – a mysterious piece of technology meant to help the people of Ember succeed in their new life.  But when he and Lina travel back to Ember, they find it has been taken over by a horrible family of savages who have stolen the gift – a gigantic blue diamond – and renamed the city Darkhold.  Captured, Doon must find an escape and figure out a way to retake Ember and her gifts for her own people.

Returning to the story fans know and love, DuPrau wraps up this series with style. Readers will appreciate having Doon and Lina back again in this final installment, and DuPrau once again creates an interesting story with characters that are multifaceted and complex.  The problems that plagued Yonwood are no longer in evidence – as a side note, while the author attempts to reference Yonwood briefly, the need for that book still does not become apparent.  The end is slightly predictable and has a large helping of “happy ever after” sugar, but is still likely to please younger readers who like their ends tied up neatly.  DuPrau is to be commended for recognizing when her story has been fully told and wrapping it up.  Fans of the series will not be disappointed in this last chapter.


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