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La cité de l'ombre

par Jeanne DuPrau

Autres auteurs: Voir la section autres auteur(e)s.

Séries: Books of Ember (1)

MembresCritiquesPopularitéÉvaluation moyenneDiscussions / Mentions
8,927390660 (3.86)1 / 258
In the year 241, twelve-year-old Lina trades jobs on Assignment Day to be a Messenger to run to new places in her decaying but beloved city, perhaps even to glimpse Unknown Regions.
Récemment ajouté parknoxx093, _Marcia_94_, ayeria10, ClaraR, 28gcumb, bibliothèque privée, Jaxquiltmaker, Arundel_Ida, mj4781, blueshirt.dev
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Anglais (384)  Allemand (1)  Toutes les langues (385)
Affichage de 1-5 de 385 (suivant | tout afficher)
Third time reading it and it still amazes me. One of my favorite books. ( )
  _Marcia_94_ | Sep 21, 2021 |
ALA Notable Book. RGG: Beautifully written fantasy story of two children's efforts to save their society. A sequel is coming!
  rgruberexcel | Aug 26, 2021 |
Lina and Doon come of age and are assigned their jobs in Ember, but neither wants their assignment and so they switch. Doon is thrilled to work underground, hoping to save the city which is falling apart. Meanwhile, Lina's grandmother finds an old box that was supposed to be maintained by the mayor, with important instructions that are accidentally masticated by Lina's little sister. When Doon and Lina decipher the message, nobody will listen and they are swept off to a new beginning. ( )
  skipstern | Jul 11, 2021 |
I found The City of Ember to be a very entertaining read that is somewhat difficult to categorize. It is essentially part science fiction, part fantasy with healthy doses of adventure, suspense, and mystery thrown in for good measure. It has a rather post-apocalyptic feel to it with a little government conspiracy on the side, although since this is a children's book, it wasn't nearly as dark as most stories of that type. My sense of this theme was confirmed when I read on the author's website that part of her inspiration for the novel was her experiences growing up in the 1950's when many people were concerned about a possible nuclear war and were building bomb shelters just in case. Having grown up in an older house that had a bomb shelter, I could definitely relate. I also thought I detected a bit of an environmental message in the story, mainly fueled by Lina and Doon's fascination with the things of nature, which was also something that Jeanne DuPrau said she hoped would be conveyed in her narrative. Trying to figure out the mystery of what and where Ember is and why it was created was a lot of fun. Some of these details were disclosed by the end of the book and others were not, but Ms. DuPrau stated that the remaining mysteries would be revealed in the next book of the series, The People of Sparks. I also think there was a morality tale embedded in The City of Ember that explored the idea that there is both light and dark inside each one of us, and which we choose to follow can affect not only ourselves but those around us too. There is a bit of a spiritual aspect to the story as well in the form of The Believers who are essentially the religious pulse of Ember. I would have liked to learn a little more about them, and perhaps they will play a bigger role in future books in the series. Ultimately though, I thought that The City of Ember was a tale about hope, courage, determination and selflessness in the face of a crisis.

I really liked the two protagonists, Lina and Doon. They are only twelve years old when the book begins, but not unlike their counterparts in similar stories, they take on semi-adult roles. Lina is a very energetic, determined and strong girl who is a survivor and very responsible for her age, having taken on a lot of the care-giving duties for her baby sister after the deaths of the adults in her life. I think I was particularly taken by Doon, a very curious boy who is fascinated by all thing, both natural and mechanical. He loves to study the few living creatures he can find in Ember, mostly insects, and is equally eager and adept at taking things apart to figure out how they work and putting them back together again. Doon has a bit of a temper problem, but underneath it all he has a good and kind heart. I loved the advice his father gave him, “The trouble with anger is, it gets hold of you. And then you aren't the master of yourself anymore. Anger is..... And when anger is the boss, you get....unintended consequences." I thought it was a great adage for kids and adults alike who might struggle with anger issues. I also think that Doon has an underlying desire to "be somebody" or “do something important,” because he always seems to be waiting for that "big moment" to reveal the things he learns about Ember and admits later that it was probably the wrong thing to do. Maybe he even has a little bit of a hero complex. Overall though, Doon and Lina both were very likable characters. I was impressed with how the author shows them sometimes being tempted to do something that would be unethical, but in the end, they make the right decisions for the good of everyone in Ember and not just themselves.

This book is highly character driven, and Jeanne DuPrau has a talent for vividly describing the sights, sounds and environment of Ember as well as the way certain things make Doon and Lina feel. In fact, I found it interesting (and difficult) to imagine what absolute darkness feels like, since Ember has no light whatsoever during the blackouts and nighttime hours. While the plot of The City of Ember moves steadily forward, the lush portraits the author paints sometimes gives it a rather languid pace. It also starts out a little slow, taking a while to build the action and suspense. I personally like the rich descriptions and am well aware of the challenges in establishing the characters and setting for a fantasy world, so these things didn't really bother me. However, I could see how kids with shorter attention spans might get bored at times. If given a chance though, the story can definitely grab both the adult and child imagination. My daughter was not entirely pleased when I announced The City of Ember as my choice for our next book to read together, but about halfway in she was enjoying it, and by the end, she was begging for the sequel. I too am very eager to read the next book of the series, since The City of Ember did have what I would characterize as a cliffhanger ending. It is followed by The People of Sparks, The Prophet of Yonwood, and The Diamond of Darkhold. For a children's book that is aimed at tweens in the 9-12 year age range, The City of Ember certainly caught my adult attention and in doing so, has earned a spot on my keeper shelf. ( )
1 voter mom2lnb | May 19, 2021 |
I picked this one up because I was intrigued by the movie trailer, but I have to say I wasn't terribly impressed. It was interesting, but the pacing seemed off and it didn't feel exciting enough. And the end was very abrupt and unsatisfying. If the trailer is any indication the movie will be a lot more action-oriented. I look forward to seeing it to see what changes they made. And I have to say that part of the pacing problem may have been attributable to the fact that I was listening to the audiobook and not reading it on the page - part of the book relied heavily on visuals so having to listen to that stuff read out loud was a little tedious.

Having said all that, I found the premise intriguing and I'll definitely listen to or read the follow-up books after a short break. ( )
  jlweiss | Apr 23, 2021 |
Affichage de 1-5 de 385 (suivant | tout afficher)
While a book like ''Faerie Wars'' diverts young readers from their daily lives, one like ''The City of Ember'' encourages them to tackle the most ambitious tasks. Hard work can save the day, it promises. It's an old-fashioned lesson that is somehow easier to swallow when delivered in a futuristic setting.
 

» Ajouter d'autres auteur(e)s (13 possibles)

Nom de l'auteur(e)RôleType d'auteurŒuvre ?Statut
Jeanne DuPrauauteur(e) principal(e)toutes les éditionscalculé
Dillon, WendyNarrateurauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Riely, ChrisArtiste de la couvertureauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Verhulst, WillemTraducteurauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé

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When the city of Ember was just built and not yet inhabited, the chief builder and the assistant builder, both of them weary, sat down to speak of the future.
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In the city of Ember, the sky was always dark. The only light came from great floodlamps mounted on the buildings and at the top of poles in the middle of the larger squares.
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In the year 241, twelve-year-old Lina trades jobs on Assignment Day to be a Messenger to run to new places in her decaying but beloved city, perhaps even to glimpse Unknown Regions.

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