Showing posts with label Dallas Middaugh. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dallas Middaugh. Show all posts

Thursday, July 21, 2016

City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau, Dallas Middaugh, Niklas Asker

Rating: WORTHY!

I tried this novel in the form of an audiobook not long ago and was disappointed in it, which itself was a disappointment because the premise is an intriguing one. When I saw the graphic novel version on the shelf at my lovely loquacious local library, I decided this was the way to go, and I was not wrong. I really enjoyed the novel in this version. The story was adapted by Dallas Middaugh, who evidently hails from the Slash & Burn school of adaptation, because this was stripped right down to the bone. This might not appeal to everyone, but it appealed to me because my biggest problem with the audiobook was how much it ramble and meandered. The art work by Niklas Asker was fine.

The story is, I assume, aimed at middle-grade readers, since the main characters featured here were quite young. Whether they match the age as envisioned by the original author I can't say. The City of Ember is in perpetual darkness and relies on an increasingly unreliable electrical system to keep it lit during the "day." The citizens lead deprived and unhappy lives, constantly unhappy and often short of food. Corruption is rampant. They're assigned work at a young age, and have no choice in their occupation. Our two main characters, Lina and Doon (Lorna Doone anyone?!) however, buck the system and exchange jobs, both getting the one they preferred, but their collaboration doesn't end there.

The two of them start feeling like there are secrets being kept and that living this life in this city isn't all they and their fellow citizens were meant for. They pursue their suspicions and discover an amazing secret. Amazing to them, that is! It's pretty obvious to the reader by then what's going on. The 'ending' was beautiful. I put it in quotes because of course it's not an ending: it's the start of a series. Yet despite that awful and debilitating drawback, I recommend this graphic novel as a worthy read.