KP Book Review: The Green Ember by S. D. Smith

In S. D. Smith’s The Green Ember series, rabbits walk on two feet, wear clothes, and carry swords, and each page urges you to keep reading. The main characters, Picket and Heather, are two young rabbit siblings whose father once told them legends of King Jupiter, but those are just stories. Or are they? Through unfortunate circumstances, Picket and Heather are thrust into a cruel world of predators, betrayal, and the rise and fall of kingdoms.The_Green_Ember

Action fills the plot and adventure is around every turn of the page.

I would define Smith’s writing style as simple, but not in a negative way, for it is a good kind of simple. C. S. Lewis once said, “Always try to use the language so as to make quite clear what you mean and make sure your sentence couldn’t mean anything else.” Smith’s writing serves as an example of this quote. Written for children, the pages of The Green Ember are not dominated by flowery and unnecessary wording. By using strong verbs and concise language, Smith writes in a manner that clearly expresses his intent. Readers will find themselves enthralled and envisioning the story in their minds, playing it out like a movie.

Action that’s written improperly can fog a story’s clarity, causing readers to lose sight of the setting and be unable to follow the characters’ movements until the scene is over. Then readers aren’t sure what happened or how the characters even managed to get out of the situation. But this problem did not exist in The Green Ember or its sequel, Ember Falls. At one point, I could vividly picture Heather, wide-eyed and frightened, running away from the slobbering, snapping jaws of a wolf. Young writers can learn from and should imitate Smith’s writing style.

The Green Ember is a fantastic and fun series. Who wouldn’t be entertained by reading about rabbits with swords? Since the series is founded on a Christian worldview, I would not hesitate to recommend it to younger readers or beginning writers.

“My place beside you, my blood for yours, till the Green Ember rises, or the end of the world.”

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Christine Eaton is a student at Providence Christian College who loves stories and hopes to publish children’s books. Wearing flip-flops in December, frequenting the beach, and taking every opportunity to visit Disneyland, Christine relishes living in sunny Southern California. She can usually be found happily sipping tea, memorizing lines from the latest play she is a part of, caving into her addiction to chocolate, writing encouraging snail mail, or listening to music, which is usually something folky like Andrew Peterson or the Gray Havens, or some Broadway musical (and rarely anything landing between those two categories.) Art is one of her largest passions, and her walls are covered in her sketches and paintings. Christine yearns to use her skills to glorify God by illustrating and writing her own children’s books that will teach children more about Jesus. Some of her favorite authors include A.S. Peterson, Francine Rivers, Louisa May Alcott, and Andrew Peterson. She is so thankful for the opportunity to manage Kingdom Pen’s social media accounts and help out around the Kingdom wherever she can. From the encouragement, enthusiastic young Christian writers, and her fellow staff members, KP holds a huge place in her heart and she is excited about encouraging young writers to write well and glorify God through their writing.
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Comments

  1. I love this series!! 🙂

  2. We found this book at a convention and got to meet Mr. Smith. He is such a nice guy and his writing style is very enjoyable. I want to read the next one! 🙂

    • @ingridrd That’s actually how I found out about these books as well. I was able to talk to Mr. Smith at The Great Homeschool convention in CA and it was really great. Also, you should be on the lookout for an interview with him on the site fairly soon. 😉

  3. ‘Who wouldn’t be entertained by reading about rabbits with swords?’
    Me, most likely. XD It does sound like a fun book though. Nice review. 😀

  4. I looovvvee these books!

  5. This series is amazing. I would say that the main thing that strikes me throughout every book is the power of imagination and stories to change our lives and affect our futures, and the importance of looking forward to the coming of the King. I love the message! I also love that S.D. Smith genuinely likes his readers, answers emails, letters, and comments, and is so fun to meet. Plus he is a Christian who classically homeschools his kids, which would make him awesome to me in any case. Bear the flame!

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