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The City of Ember

The City of Ember

by Jeanne DuPrau

Dreams, Hopes, and Plans Theme

The City of Ember is built on hope—no matter how dismal it seems in Lina and Doon's time. Obviously it took a lot of planning to make the dream of Ember (a refuge for humans in a world careening toward disaster) a reality. The Builders were some pretty ambitious and hard-working folks to make it come together. And if you fast forward to the present, we see Lina and Doon with hopes and plans of their own. Not everything they hope for comes to pass, but hey, we're gonna say that hoping in general is better than not hoping at all.

Questions About Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

  1. How are Lina's and Doon's dreams and hopes different? How about similar?
  2. Why did the Builders plan Ember? Was it out of hope? Desperation?
  3. What does Lina hope to find when she leaves Ember? Do those hopes come true?
  4. What are Doon's goals throughout the book, and how do they change?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

The mayor: too much planning, too little hope.

Ember is a place of unfulfilled dreams, but once they get above ground, they'll realize that that's not the solution to their problems, either.

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