Review: The People of Sparks by Jeanne DuPrau

sparksThis is the second book in the Book of Ember series. (Read the review for Book One here.) I didn’t expect to be reading it so soon, but I honestly think I have a book hoarding problem. And in particular, when I go to the library. Even though I literally have shelves full of unread books at home, which I own, I am drawn to the titles at the library which I do not own. I don’t know what this says about me, maybe that my eye is constantly roaming for something better, more exciting, or that I just love books THAT much.

Either way, this book made it home with me on a recent trip, and I decided to dive into it first as opposed to some of the more difficult titles I picked up (Read: I actually picked some “Grown Up” books!)

It’s important to note that this IS a children’s book, so some of the behavior and scenarios that happen here seem sort of, well, childish. The story picks up where book one left off, where the people of Ember have evacuated the city and have arrived at the town of Sparks. The people of Sparks are dumbfounded and don’t know what to do with these extra 400 mouths to feed. As the two societies clash and try to get along, conflicts arise and prejudices begin to form. The conflict comes to a head and the two societies reach a breaking point … but can they overcome and learn to live together?

That’s the gist of this story, which draws parallels to some of the conflicts we see in our own society. Small misunderstandings can blow up and lead to greater difficulties. People who are out for themselves can take advantage of situations and manipulate others into believing things.

It’s interesting enough to me, as an adult, that I want to finish out the series (two more books). I think a younger person would probably enjoy this more, particularly since it is written with them in mind.

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