I first heard about The Green Ember by S.D. Smith on the Read Aloud Revival. However, it also seemed popular on the Read Aloud Revival Facebook group so when it was available as a free download on Kindle, I jumped at the chance to read this book.
The Green Ember is a substantial novel for children, running to 368 pages and 44 chapters. It is based around two rabbits, Heather and Picket who become homeless and without close family, after a disaster. The story follows their wanderings and how they learn about family secrets, community, rabbit politics, deception and betrayal.
The action is fast paced after the first chapter; rabbits perform amazing feats and good triumphs. The end is satisfying but leaves room for a sequel.
I am looking forward to reading this book around to my six and eight year olds. This book is suitable for reading aloud from about age six and for reading independently, for readers from about eight or nine. The only people who might want to avoid this book are those who do not like anthromorphism or those who don't wish to read about animals being injured. The descriptions of injury are not unduly graphic and I have no concern about reading this to my six year old.
Like all books with any meat, The Green Ember presents plenty of opportunities for discussion, mapping and cooking around the book but, of course, it should be savoured and enjoyed first.
The Green Ember is available from Amazon as a kindle book for £4.99 or from the Rabbit Room at $22.95 for a hardback or $12.95 for a paperback.
I note that a prequel called The Black Star of Kingston has just been published.
Disclaimer: I received a free copy when The Green Ember was free on Kindle.