The Continent of Ember is humanity's last hope. Nine hundred years ago, the Ocean started to expand. Scholars and Scientists searched to find a cause or a remedy - to no avail. Their last hail Mary was to build and fortify the continent of Ember: A raised, metal mammoth that is testament to humanity's bygone genius. They hoped it would be enough. They were wrong. The ocean wasn't all they had to fear. While humanity sequestered itself within its fabricated continent, the rest of the world evolved. Plants and Animals mutated. Once benign creatures began to terrorize humanity. Their aim? To take Ember. The expansion of the ocean means land is scarce, and food even more so. Ember - small, but flourishing thanks to the careful planning of its creators - is too tempting a bait to ignore. Humanity found itself trapped between an ever expanding ocean and mutated creatures. Then hope arrived. Humanity started to evolve too. Four Hundred years after the creation of Ember, human children began to gain powers over the elements. These mages, as they were named, became the saviors of humankind. They repelled the advancing creatures and saved the newfound continent. Now, five hundred years later, Mages are the foundation and strength of society. The strongest Mages live two, three hundred years, and there are whispers that some of the ancients - original Mages - still survive, raising talented apprentices. Humanity is locked in an ongoing struggle for survival. At the age of fifteen, every child is tested; the gifted ones get to move to the capital city, Resistance, home to the Mage Academy. Talented Mages stand at the top of society, in exchange for risking their lives. Parents bear kids with the hopes of rearing a Mage. For most people, it's a futile dream, but for Rae, an orphan with no knowledge of her past - anything is possible.