My Reading Speed: 145+ pages a day, or 16.5 chapters a day.
The Main Characters: Nickie Randolph, a young girl who wants to help the world, and Grover Persons, a boy who wants to be a herpetologist (someone who studies snakes.)
My Brief Synopsis: This book is a prequel to The City of Ember and seems to take place a lot closer to the present than the other books. There is talk about a big Disaster approaching, various countries being at war with each other. A woman in Yonwood, North Carolina receives a horrible vision of a future in which the planet is barren and destroyed (hence the title). Nickie has 3 goals when she arrives with her aunt in Yonwood. 1~Convince her aunt to keep the big house her great-grandfather left them instead of selling it. 2~Fall in love during her stay. 3~Help the world in some small, special way.
The Conflicts: The alleged Prophet's friend, Mrs. Beeson, interprets the mumblings as instructions for the people to avoid this terrible future, but that doesn't seem quite right. No singing and dancing? No dogs? Why should people give up these kind of things? Why should the boy Grover give up his snakes, just because the bible says they're supposed to be evil? Why should God care about such trivial things when there's a global crisis?
My General Comments: I'm glad the story's events are closer to now than the others, though it seems like a scary prospect of the future, having so many people worry if the world's going to end. Who knows if we're not so far away from that unless we fix things right now, like global warming or foreign relations? It's serious stuff to think about, but it's always important to keep thinking about the future, how you can help make things better instead of worse.
My Favorite Part: I liked the last chapter very much. I know, it's seeming like a pattern for me. Me liking endings the most. But this was really good. You get to know how all the characters fared in the end and everyone seems happy, but then you realize that events still have to lead up to the point that Ember started up at, and yet it's satisfying. I had a sneaking suspicion that Nickie would grow to be the old lady who wrote the journal Lina and Doon found.
My Favorite Things About the Book: Well, since it's a prequel, I really like that things were cleared up. Of course, I think a tiny bit that the characters were slightly more... childish than Lina and Doon. I don't know, like, Lina and Doon seem a lot braver and more resourceful than Nickie and Grover. That's the only critique I'm going to make, because I did quite like it. Maybe not quite so much as the others, but it was good. Really.
Here's the link to The People of Sparks's Wikipedia Article.
What is your favorite part? If you haven't read this book, sorry for all the spoilers, but you can comment and say if this book review was helpful. If you have read this book, please give me a comment or email me so we can discuss it. This would be the closest I've ever gotten to a book club, you know.