One of my personal rules as a school librarian is that if a student wants me to read a book - even if it's not in my "comfort zone" (eg, not a genre I like, or a graphic novel) - I will. Several years ago one of my students came running in to the library at MFPOW, very excited about a book he'd just read. Now, this student is dyslexic, so I knew that reading wasn't that easy for him. If he was excited about having read a book, I absolutely had to read it.
The book? City of Ember.
Even though I'm no longer at that school, we've kept in touch and when the movie was released, we decided to go see it. This morning I trundled down to NYC to meet him and see how the book-to-movie translation had gone.
Our verdict? It could have been worse. We didn't remember several of the "set pieces" that the movie provided (for example, the unraveling of the map didn't take place in the generator room), and at times it was a little too much like a Raiders chase or a Disney ride. Granny's role was truncated in the movie, and the mayor's expanded. Maybe because we knew the plot we didn't find it that suspenseful... and we thought that the director's opening sequence ruined the discovery of what the City of Ember was and why for the viewer.
Still, it could have been worse. And we're hoping that People of Sparks isn't made into a movie - we didn't like it (neither of us read Prophet of Yonwood as a result).
(Side note: saw the trailer forInkheart and, well, it seems that they've compressed the trilogy into one movie. Not sure how I feel about that.)