File Size: 3463 KB
Print Length: 368 pages
Publisher: Story Warren Books (December 12, 2014)
Publication Date: December 12, 2014
A hero story, this is more Hobbit than Watership Down. More Narnia than Beatrix Potter. And it works. I was suspicious because I usually prefer my animal characters to carry the James Herriot kind - rather than the talking Beaver kind. But, this, like Lewis, somehow lets us neglect that Heather and Picketer are animals and instead we relate to the heroes during these interesting figures.
I had difficulty getting into the story. Because I had formed no idea what the intention was, We struggled in the initial few chapters. They were almost too pastoral for me. Looking backwards, I understand now that they are in fact much like the beginning of The Halbling - the innocence of the Shire (I imply Nick Hollow) must be acknowledged before the journey may start.
Once Picket and Heather and are on the run, the tale comes alive.
I have continued to wait weeks to write this review because I want really to communicate the profound value of this humble and tender little story. Even 8 weeks later, words fail me.
Heather and Picket are unwitting participants in an journey that transforms them into the very best versions of themselves - in the old fashioned way. These people suffer much. They struggle against themselves. They very humble themselves. They confront their own worst attributes. And they do it with the help of incredible mentors and new friends who have their own complex histories.
Presently there is so much to love about this book. This feeds the imagination, feeds the soul and fortifies the character of the reader.
S. D. Smith is the creative push behind Story Warren - an internet site dedicated to being the horns of Rohan in our lives even as we seek stories of truth, benefits and beauty that time our children to the Maker.
There is a truthfulness in S. D. Smith's writing that produces the reader feel like they too could possibly be the heroes of their own stories. Just like the greats that Smith loves (Tolkien, Lewis, etc. ), he tells stories worth knowing. Tales which inform the meaningful imagination and continue to talk to the reader long after the book has been returned to the shelf.
It is exactly as S. D. Smith claims at Story Warren - they are on our side. They are allies in imagination.
I have been asked about the intensity degree of this book. I would put it at the same level as The Last Battle. Our four year old experienced no problem with this book but he is not particularly sensitive. We feel that it is reasonable to say that the intensity progresses as follows:
Typically the Green Ember/The Black Star of Kingston
The Hobbit/The Wingfeather Saga
The Master of the Rings, "My place beside you, my blood for yours. Right up until the Green Ember goes up or the ending of the world! " Therefore ends the prologue to The Green Ember. Such a start! S. D. Smith's debut novel stands in stark contrast to most modern-day middle school fictional. Courage, loyalty, wisdom, and hope abound. Classic benefits are esteemed. It is moral without moralizing. This is dramatic without turning to preteen angst. It is swashbuckling without glorifying violence. Good is good and evil is evil. Clearly Smith is influenced by Lewis' Narnia, but this isn't derivitive fan fictional. Smith has created a new world that stands on its own inhabited by wonderful and sometimes frightening characters.
Heather and Picketer are young rabbits who are dragged into world events much larger on their own. Their journey begins because their parents are visited by mysterious strangers, and their father hints that the family history may be tinged with intrigue, unfaithfulness, and great pain. Within just the first few web pages, Smith launches the reader along with Heather and Picket on the fast-paced flight away from their home and headlong in the direction of something important. From labyrinths to hidden kingdoms, our heroes travel in the direction of their destiny. Along the way they meet wonderful characters like the unexpectedly capable Smalls whose own path may be more dangerous than theirs. There is the darker and mysterious Helmer whose mastery of the artistry of war draw Picketer out from the prison of crippling self-indulgence and sets your pet on the trajectory of great danger and self-sacrifice. Typically the wise Maggie O'Sage and Uncle Wilfred set hope firmly within their hearts.
Despite surviving in a blighted world surrounded by foes and treachery, Heather, Picket, and their new friends hold firmly to that hope. Till the Green Ember rises and also the End of the World!
The Environmentally friendly Ember is at their core merely a good tale. I recommend this a read-aloud for youngsters or a self-serve novel for middle schoolers. The reading level is comparable to the Chronicles of Narnia. My small kids love it. Rabbits with swords! What's not to love?
[Disclosure: I feel related by marriage to the author. This relationship has not impacted my objectivity when observing my children beg, "Please just one more chapter! "], Adored this book! After reading this, I knew that my 9 year old granddaughter would love it. The lady is a huge Narnia fan and a voracious reader. So I purchased a second book for her because I desired to keep my copy. ~Smile~ My only complaint is usually that the author really should have the sequel ready for publication before selling this book. My anticipation level for the next " tale" is operating high. Not really a true cliffhanger, but definitely left an appetite for more of this saga., We, my ten year old daughter and I, just finished Green Ember. Really, I finished it a week ago as I got tired of awaiting our times of reading it high in volume together. She were required to finish it herself and she is " furious! " The lady came stomping in this morning declaring, " THAT CAN" T END PRESENTLY THERE! Is there another publication?! GRRRR! " She has been a reluctant reader but that is all over now. The last few weeks she has started to enjoy reading but this is the first time she experienced such a complete range of emotions reading. The lady doesn't know how she will wait for the next publication.
Oh, and as important, I ENJOYED reading it with her. So often a book doesn't achieve multi-generational enjoyment, The Green Ember does. I hope it comes out in an audio tracks book soon as it would be PERFECT for summer road trips. We hate it when all the teens are being attentive to separate music. A good book draws everyone into the same story and makes for more interesting dinner discussion.
The kindle price is a steal, but We bought the physical publication because it creates better snuggling on the chair reading.
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