The Diamond of Darkhold


The Diamond of Darkhold, the fourth book of Ember

Jeanne DuPrau

Random House Children’s Books, 2008

The story centers around a few days during the Emberites first winter as residents of Sparks. There is hardly enough food to go around, the days are grey, rainy and short. A fever has swept through the village taking some people with it. The future seems quite dire to everyone. Doon, however, sees it as an opportunity to do good and to find a way to help the village. He enlists the help of a very reluctant Lina to return to the City of Ember to see what they can find to help Sparks survive. While there, Doon is kidnapped, Lina is almost eaten by wolves and together they discover a beautiful blue diamond that somehow offers a bright promise for the future.

Main characters

  •  Doon Harrow, young man of 14, ever curious about the world around him and how it works
  •  Lina Mayfleet, 12 year old girl, who misses her old home, Ember and feels a bit guilty about it

Secondary characters

  • Loris Harrow, Doon’s father (we finally learn his name is not “Doon’s father”), makes several appearances on the outskirts of the story.
  • Mrs. Murdo, who looks after Poppy and Lina, is also on those same outskirts
  • Kenny Parton, young boy from Sparks who really admires Doon
  • Torren, nephew of Dr. Hester and still wants to be a roamer
  •  Lizzie, former best friend of Lina when they were back in Ember

New characters  

  • Washton Trogg, head of the family who has taken over Ember and likes to rename everyone and everything under his control. He fancies himself to be very smart and very powerful. He renamed himself after a most powerful ancient city and renamed his family after ancient cities as well. He renamed his wife, Minny;  his son, Yorick; and his daughter, Kanza. He also kidnapped a young boy who he keeps as a worker and renamed him Scawgo. See if you can guess the city names he used. Scawgo’s took me the longest to figure out. I will give you the answers at the end of the review!
  • Maggs, a roamer, who introduces Lina to her first horse and helps her find shelter during a rain storm.


So I really enjoyed this book so much more than all the rest. Probably because it concluded the series and it ended on such a hopeful note. Sometimes dystopian novels end well, but not necessarily with as bright a future as the one this author portrayed. I enjoyed reading about Lina and Doon, and wouldn’t mind reading more about their adventures into this new world and their future life together. Much to Lina’s surprise, she really does live happily ever after –  just as the book of fairy tales Edward Pocket showed her said she could.

Rating: 4 paws for this book, but 3 paws for the overall series.

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Reviewer: BobbiSue

Okay, so I’m not going to come right out and give you the city names. Where is the fun in that? How about some visual clues instead!


Washton Trogg

Minnie Apples Trogg

Yorick Trogg

Kanza Trogg 

Scawgo, boy kidnapped by the Troggs.

Did you guess them all? Tried to make it easy for you!

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