All these words, written so long ago, seemed to say to her, Remember us. We were here. We were real.
The Prophet of Yonwood by Jeanne DuPrau is the prequel novel to the City of Ember series… but not really.
An eleven-year-old girl spends a summer in Yonwood, North Carolina helping her aunt clean out her great grandfather’s house. During this time, she is immersed into an odd town with even odder townspeople. Nickie has to learn the difference between good and evil and who you can trust.
What I Thought
This book is supposedly a prequel to the City of Ember series, but it’s not. The entire story has no relation to the first two books until the last two pages, which ultimately makes reading this book a complete waste of time.
The story is about eleven-year-old Nickie, a girl who will eventually – 50 years in the future – become one of the first citizens of Ember. At the beginning, Nickie is spending the summer in North Carolina with her aunt cleaning out her late Great Grandfather’s house to fix it up to sell. The town turns out to be a very peculiar town with weird, naive natives who have strange religious overtones and follow this insane lady and do whatever she says. It’s honestly not interesting in the least.
Reading this book is like reading an author’s scattered notes and ideas for a story. There is not plot. DuPrau just takes you on these goose-chases that do not lead anywhere. For example:
- There is a random girl and her dog living in her great grandfather’s attic
- Nickie finds a letter written in a weird crosshatch type of way
- Nickie finds a picture of Siamese twins
- Her great grandfather’s journal talks of a mysterious vision
- Some citizens of Yonwood are required to wear noisy bracelets against their will
- There is an albino bear in the woods posing as a “terrorist”
- Nickie’s father sends her odd letters
Literally, this story can barely be called a story, but the worst part is that it has no relation to the City of Ember. This should have been a standalone book, not dubbed a prequel just because the uber annoying, naive, childish main character will grow up to live in Ember.
This book could have been great if written from a Builder’s perspective or talked about entering Ember and what it was like in it’s prime or why they chose to teach this or that or not provide this. It could have been very intriguing and informative, but instead we get this piece of garbage.
My Review: 0 Stars
Do not waste your time with this “prequel.” I recommend to no one.
Did you feel this was an adequate prequel to the series?
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