Happy Birthday Ember Rising!

Happy Birthday Ember Rising! We’re celebrating with a GIVEAWAY so read on!

“The seed of the new world smolders,” he cried. “But a fire comes first. Bear the flame!”

Happy Birthday, Ember Rising

A harrowing adventure inside enemy territory. Heather and Picket are plunged into the darkness of Morbin’s shadow, fighting to bear the flame of the cause and light the way for rabbitkind’s upright insurrection.

Hope for a Healing
Work for the Mending
Fight for the Rising

Once The Green Ember and Ember Falls (as well as The Black Star of Kingston & The Last Archer!) were released, readers of all ages were clamoring for more Green Ember adventures. Fans were delighted to receive Ember Rising:

Watch the video to hear what S. D. Smith has to say about this harrowing adventure.

Here is what YOU have said over the years about Ember Rising.

Add your thoughts on Goodreads, Amazon, or Audible. Thank you for taking the time to review these books.

Fun Fact: Ember Rising shares a birthday month with National Backyard Day so head outside for a game of Hoopvolley!


Picket joins the bucks and does of Harbone Citadel in a game of Hoopvolley.

You will need:

  • hoop (or tire)
  • ball

How to play:

Two players stand on opposing sides with a hoop (or tire) in between, about 10 steps away from the hoop. A player tries to kick the ball into the hoop in as few kicks as possible. Once the ball is through the hoop, the opposite player tries to kick it back through the hoop in as many kicks or less.

Note: A tire is nice, because it’s stable.

This game is played together as you try and beat your last high score.

We love to see you playing in The Green Ember world. Share with us using #rabbitswithswords and tag @sdsmithereens on Instagram or Facebook!

Here is what you’ve been creating: (Watch the video to hear a beautiful & original song from a fan named Caroline Jarvis!)

Keep sharing with us on the socials for a chance to be featured in our next birthday celebration!

New to The Green Ember? Get started with the first audiobook for FREE by signing up for our newsletter.

Also free: coloring pages for free when you Gimme 5!

If you want your very own copy, Ember Rising is available at the S. D. Smith Family Store (where you get the best deal) and is also available on audiobook and eBook (and print) at Amazon and your favorite bookshops.

And, if your library partners with Hoopla, you can listen to ALL the audiobooks for free! Make sure to check with your local library & follow the recommended reading order.

Years ago, Ember Rising started on Kickstarter. Enjoy this blast from the past… or is it the future… thinking face

More Birthday Fun: Giveaway! *CLOSED*

In honor of Ember Rising’s birthday, here is what we’re giving away:

( 1 ) Complete SIGNED set of ALL The Green Ember Books
( 1 ) Complete set of The Green Ember Series Audiobooks
( 4 ) SIGNED copies of Ember Rising
( 4 ) Ember Rising Audiobooks

For a total of 10 winners!

To Enter: 
Comment with your favorite game to play in your backyard. Enter on Instagram and Facebook for additional entries.

Rules: Must have a U.S. mailing address. Must be 18 or older. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by or associated with Facebook or Instagram. Void where prohibited. Winners will be selected and notified on March 15th.

Thank you for celebrating the book birthday of Ember Rising with us!

Check out these other birthday celebrations:


    1. Too many fun backyard games to choose from!! I’d have to say archery! Which is perfect for this Ember theme! But we also love swimming! Thank you for your awesome books and a chance to win the fantastic collection! Happy, happy birthday!!!

      1. We love to dance on the patio around the fire pit after dark. And we’ve been playing the hilarious card game Creative Kids Absurdities as a family.

    2. Many a great battle have been fought in our woods. The trails the kids groom themselves, have named and staked (they share a few with the deer), and have countless hideouts with extra swords, whittled arrows, and shields ready to go. There’s a book series that may have started this play….?

  1. I love playing Capture the Flag? with my friends! We also play Gray Wolf?, Ghosts in the Graveyard?, and Sardines?.

    1. my favorite is a nap in the sunshine. lol! my kids love playing “food corners” (a type of tag) but recently I hear them just acting out your books for hours out there! We are newer to them and our whole family loves them! So grateful for how you are using your gifting from God! Thank you from us all!!!

    1. The kids say freeze tag and scorpion hunting (in the dark with black light flashlights ?) are the clear winners!

  2. We live in a rural, farming area with plenty of apple trees, thus our kids love to play “apple baseball” every fall!

  3. We love playing hockey (in the winter) and basketball (in the summer)… or frisbee with our pup year-round! 🙂

  4. Frisbee is always a lot of fun for the whole family, and we also enjoy a weird and slightly savage version of volleyball.

  5. My favorite game is still star watching at night, followed by chasing lightning bugs and s’mores. Happy birthday!

  6. We just moved to Maryland and are new to this area, so we are basically still exploring our huge backyard and figuring out our favorite games to play there.
    Generally, we love making forts because that way we enjoy our surroundings to the fullest and can always be creative. Certainly, kicking balls, playing soccer, jumping on the trampoline while listening to an audio book make up for great alternatives. Happy birthday, Ember Rising!

    1. Run and scream your little heart out because you don’t have to use your indoor voice!! Actually, climbing trees has to be the best!

  7. So exciting! Backyard games: Hide and Seek, Archery. My kids like to split with two in front of the house and two behind, throwing a ball over the roof. ?

  8. My kids favorite backyard game is a game they invented that’s been running for many years and they just keep adding to it. It allows their imaginations to run along with their bodies 🙂

  9. Our favorite game to play in our yard is two-hand-touch football! Tired and sweaty afterwards, but cold iced tea easily remedies that 🙂

    1. We don’t have a favorite game to play outside. The boys love digging in the yard since our soil is so sandy. They create lakes and castles, with the occasional flooding by the youngest.

  10. Water Gun fights, Freeze tag, football! Happy birthday! So so grateful for your books! They have been such a good and rich gift to our family.

  11. Our favorite games change over time, but baseball is a pretty constant one. My kids also often request Throw Throw Burrito Extreme Edition. 🙂

  12. My kids love to play games with water that end up making mud.? lots of make believe play happens. Happy birthday, Green Ember, my daughter loves your books and the green ember audiobook kept the entire family company on part of our 5400 mile road trip last summer.

  13. Ember Rising is definitely one of my favorite books in the series. It shows such hope and bravery!
    My favorite things to do outside are ride bikes with my family and friends, plant flowers, and pick blueberries.

  14. Happy birthday, Ember Rising! We are SOOOOOO excited for our copy of, “Prince Lander and the Dragon War” to arrive soon ?! Our kiddos favorite thing to play outside is “archery tournament”…which, undoubtedly, came from, “The Archer’s Cup” ?. They have even organized tournaments for all the kids in our small group from church, complete with obstacles and prizes! So much fun!

  15. I have three boys. Our favorite game to play in the backyard is throwing the ball for our dog. She runs so fast and the boys all try to get the ball before she does. They have not succeeded yet. But the game can last for hours. Our dog loves it!

  16. Our favorite “game” to play in the backyard is pretend! Whatever time period and situation that comes to mind (although pioneer seems to be pretty prevalent at the moment) gets acted out to the fullest. Now if we had to choose a traditional game, I’d say badminton or archery practice (only when Dad is home to supervise though)!

  17. Our favorite backyard game would probably be hide and seek- it’s so timeless! Can’t wait to read the new book! ❤️

  18. We have three different things to climb, so there is a lot of conquering each other’s territory and shenanigans that make me prefer not to watch! 🙂

  19. I’ve always enjoyed playing Bocce. Last summer, we were introduced to a yard game called Mölkky- looking forward to playing it more once the spring weather arrives!

  20. Definitely freeze tag. I was never any good, but I absolutely loved the rush of it. I cannot wait to show it to my children when they get old enough. Thank you for everything you do.

  21. Playing in the mud seems to be a favorite for our family. We’ve even built a backyard mud kitchen! I’ve been served up the most delicious meals, treats, and hot beverages from that kitchen. No matter the season, our kids seem to find mud and spend hours playing and imagining!

  22. We love playing disc golf, nerf, and sledding in our backyard! But most of all, those imaginary adventures that are made up on the spot and everyone adds to the story as it unfolds-dirt, sticks and trees required! Haha ?

  23. Happy Birthday to Ember Rising! We love archery, tag, and hide-n-seek but our favorite pastime is imagining that we are characters in our favorite books series (such as Green Ember) and having all-new adventures!

  24. Kids have made a little fort in our tree area. The rest of the neighborhood kids come over and they play house in there 🙂

  25. “Sniff Tag” is a favorite in our backyard with our Holland Lop buck “Little Guy” and my 12 year old daughter. First she runs and screams which thrills Little Guy, making him start buzzing and chasing her. If he is able to sniff her leg as she runs, then she is “it” and turns around and chases him. Since he was a little bunny, Little Guy has never been happier than when chasing a screaming girl.

  26. We play basketball, cornhole and the kids love building forts and imaging all sorts of adventures. Last fall they were making bows out of sticks and strings so I bought them wooden bow/arrow sets with soft tips and they have been living it!

    1. Our family’s favorite backyard game is flashlight tag; perfect for dark, summer nights!!

      Happy birthday, Ember Rising!!

  27. My kids are little but we taught them how to throw a frisbee last summer and it’s probably my favorite to watch (very entertaining). They usually make their own fun and play in the dirt though. We just starting listening to the first book and they always beg for more!

  28. We love playing cornhole as a family! It’s so much fun and it’s a game the whole family can play, even the littles!

  29. My boys favorite games to play in the yard are baseball or sword fighting. Jacob, Josiah and Isaac have all loved the Green Ember series and would love to own their own copy.

  30. What a great giveaway! Our favorite backyard game right now is Fetch! We just got a rescue puppy (he’s almost 8 months old) and we are working on playing with him to burn off energy. Thanks for writing great books for kids.

  31. At 61, my favorite backyard game is thanking my husband for roasting my marshmallows perfectly for more ‘smores. I have really enjoyed the books and am so happy to gift them to my grandkids.

  32. Happy Birthday! Our favorite backyarders are badminton and soccer. But look out for the turkey poo! LOL!

  33. I love playing Capture the Flag with friends. We go camping a lot and it’s always so much fun to get a bunch of people together and play. It’s almost a tradition now we’ve played it so much, there has been some crazy games!

    Thank you Mr. Smith for writing these incredible books. I appreciate how they are appropriate for all ages, and I don’t have to worry about what I’m reading, they are so fun and enjoyable!

  34. As I have gotten older, I seem to play outside less and less, but when I do get out there I enjoy tag, volleyball, and (if I can beg my sisters into it) fencing with sword, knife, spear, and axe. Usually though, due to the lack of players (or victims ?), I just jog around.

  35. My favorite game to play in the backyard is soccer with my family. It is a fun time to grow closer with my family.

  36. We have a puppy named Aster, and, since he has overabounding energy, we have a game called “Crazy Runaround Time” where we all run around the yard in all directions, and it’s Aster’s job to herd us (he’s half border collie). He loves it, and we enjoy it, too. We also play “Walnut Wars” which involves lots of hiding (and the throwing of walnuts) around our big walnut tree (the fort).

  37. I like playing football with my brothers best but our front yard is better than our backyard because it doesn’t have as many trees and is more level.

  38. My son loves to play with his bubble machine chasing bubbles around, playing with his turtle on the lawn or climbing a tree and bird watching all day. He loves animals so much and your books are his favorite. He says, “I can’t ever read any other books because nothing will be better than the Green Ember series.” Happy Birthday !

  39. We love playing “Dragon.” The kids stay on the deck while I (dad/the dragon) hide. When they’re satisfied that the dragon is not a threat, they come down out of “the castle” to play. Some how the dragon always seems to know when they’re playing and occasionally manages to capture one of them. It’s amazing how they always seem to find a way to escape! 😉

  40. Our favorite backyard game is called Kubb. It is a Scandinavian game that somehow got popular in our small town in Wisconsin. We now host the world championships! Happy Birthday, Green Ember!

  41. A blast from the past would be capture the flag or ghost in the graveyard. More recently I think the ladder ball game or good ol tag are on the top o the list. Love this series!

  42. So many choices! We recently built an obstacle course, but the littlest one loves the sandbox, and Molkee is a great family yard game!

  43. Our family loves to play backyard soccer!!!
    We also play a fun game of pop the balloon! (Dad fills a huge balloon as full as it can hold on the trampoline, with all kids under the trampoline waiting anxiously until the balloon just can’t hold any more and then POP! And ensuing screaming and laughing and very wet kids!) They love it!

  44. Our family loves to play soccer in the backyard or in the summer sponge water bombs. The kids do a lot of dirt and mud play too!
    Happy Birthday Ember Rising!

  45. We love playing badminton, basketball, and soccer in our backyard. Happy Birthday to Ember Rising!! ?

  46. During the lockdown, my kids made up a game they called Darby. It is a combination of soccer, handball, and tag. We have spent hours playing this over the last couple of years.

  47. My boys love shooting targets in the backyard with bow & arrow (seems fitting) and airsoft guns. They also like to play Manhunt with flashlights at night…lots of fun. : D

  48. It isn’t really a game, but we love to swing in our backyard. We can literally spend hours doing it.

  49. Our daughter loves using our yard for swinging, bird and bunny watching, reading, archery, and coming up with her own games.

  50. I love to swing, hike with my nieces and nephews (major green ember fans) and sometimes just sit and enjoy the sunshine. 🙂

  51. Our family loves cornhole, but we have a horseshoe pit in the yard now, and that has been our new exciting game!

  52. We love to play Cornhole in the backyard. We also love letting our bunnies out of their cages and watching them play in the grass. Thanks for these great books and the chance to win!

  53. A childhood favorite was “dog tag.” We had a lot of dogs, and it became a neighborhood favorite to come to our back yard and play this. We’d run from one side of our (fairly big) back yard to the other, and anyone the dogs touched while running to the other side was out. My kids have picked up a similar game with our dogs now–though our family only has 2 dogs!

  54. We love playing on the swings or probably tag or hide and seek. My boys love to play basketball or kick the soccer ball or toss a football almost anytime of year. We also have a great hill for sledding in the winter.

  55. My kids said their favorite game outside is Bigfoot, which is basically hide and go seek tag in the dark.

  56. We enjoy croquet, wiffle ball and a made-up game of throw-the-football-over-the-pavillion-roof to each other. 🙂

  57. My kids love to play catch the chickens. Does that count????

    We don’t play games in the backyard too often, we’re more of a nature walk family. #Countryliving

  58. Our kids favorite thing to do in the backyard is:

    Sword fighting.

    This has been a consistent activity all through their teens and twenties, in sunshine or in snow. The 5 boys have amassed a large collection of high impact polypropylene medieval training swords made by Cold Steel Knives over the past 17-18 years.

  59. Happy Birthday, Ember Rising! We love to play catch or hit a volleyball back and forth. A close second and third are playing in the dirt with little toys (faeries, animals, and such) as well as the age old Trampoline!

  60. My kids love to play soccer and self-created games that involve sticks and other outdoor objects as imaginative weapons!

  61. We love to play baseball/catch, and we love shooting the bow and arrow. My little one loves to explore and draw with chalk. ?

  62. Happy Birthday! Our favorite game to play is called refrigerator, where the person who is “it” calls out a good and the others have to run to designated locations if they like dislike or have never tried that food, before the person who is “it” tags them. It’s pretty funny!

  63. Oh how do I choose? We have had many epic backyard adventures. But make believe adventures to lands far away incorporating capes and archery and picnic lunches in the ravine always win.

  64. We enjoy any sports, basketball, baseball, frisbee, golf, koob, homemade water slide, you name it we do it! With a growing family of 9 nothing is off limits.

    Happy Birthday! Thank you for the opportunity to enter this giveaway. God bless

  65. The Green Ember books were love at first sight! A staple in our home library.
    We love to play Capture the Flag.

  66. Our fave backyard game is croquet. Sadly, our set got ruined. ? We’re moving from CA to OH, so we will pick up a new set for our big backyard!

  67. We love to drag our life size Connect Four game outside and play. The trampoline is a close second. Love Green Ember!!!

  68. I love stick sword fights. They are especially fun when included in a game of Capture the Flag or a treasure hunt!

  69. My kids love to make treasure hunts for each other in our yard. I also have my eye on a backyard game called Kubb.

  70. My kids’ favorite backyard game is to put on “video game” music (there are some great playlists on Spotify for Super Mario Bros, Legend of Zelda, etc) and run around pretending they are in the game!

  71. My 4 kids love to play “adventure” in our little woods. They take turns coming up with adventure they’re going on, and what their characters are, and just go nuts. It’s amazing!

  72. Thank you for this series and this giveaway! Favorite backyard game? I grew up on a small cul de sac which was the backyard for all of us kids. Riding bikes. Playing softball. Skate boarding. Hide and seek. Red River. Making mud and gravel dams after rains. It was a great and safe place to grow up.

  73. My favorite backyard game is Go Work in the Garden. My kids prefer Jump on the Trampoline or Pick Up All the Dog Poop. Just kidding, they hate that last game.

  74. Our family enjoys playing capture the flag, building forts and playing “war”, and family soccer or football games!

  75. My six-year-old’s favorite game to play in the backyard is tag because she likes to see who can run the fastest. My four-year-old’s favorite game is, “Playing with bikes and stuff like that.” (Monster trucks are often involved.)

  76. Our favorite backyard games are games we make up ourselves. We call our latest favorite “get it and go!”

  77. Our Green Ember fans love to play “small ball” or mini tennis in our driveway. All the neighborhood kids come over when they see the net set up, since anyone can play, no matter the skill level.

    We have the first 4 books, but loaned them to a friend and would love to let them keep them! My daughters who’ve read the series again and again are missing them!

  78. My daughters like to play soccer in our backyard. They also love climbing trees and making mud pies ?

  79. We do not have much of a yard since chickens took over, so either playing with the chickens or running up and down our little hill having races. They do love to hike, but that is outside of the backyard 🙂

  80. We love archery, the trampoline, reading books and acting out the stories and playing in the woods.

  81. Our favorite backyard game with my cousins are hide and sick and story telling under the shaded tree. Nothing beats the smell of the freshly baked cookies after.?
    Happy birthday, Ember!

  82. We have so many great memories reading this series together, even in our backyard! Right now we love to sled in our backyard and with the return of spring we will fly kites and go hiking into the woods. 🙂

  83. Favorite backyard games with our family are soccer or finding nature items to build tiny houses and villages for fairies and dragons and gnomes.

  84. How we LOVE The Green Ember! And how we love playing catch in the yard! And soccer, and croquet, and, and, and…

  85. Dig a trench in the sandbox and pour water in once route is complete and untampered with by the youngest siblings ?.

  86. Happy Birthday to my favorite book series I have ever read to my boys…and we read a lot! We would love winning this contest – our favorite backyard game is a toss up between hide and seek tag for one and yard golf for another. 🙂

  87. Happy Birthday to The Green Ember! What an amazing accomplishment.

    My children absolutely love playing freeze tag with friends and with family we do love archery! We are new to it but their Dad has become an archery hunter and the boys are so eager to be like Dad!

  88. My four boys’ favorite game is “Be Whatever You Want To Be” and it is just like it sounds. It usually turns into an epic chose-your-own-adventure story battle.

  89. My kids love playing some form of chase the bad guys outside in our yard with random sticks as swords or guns.

  90. We love to play corn hole! We have five kids under 9 so it is always a hoot to try to play a game ?

  91. Our kids played “Marisat” for years. They “planted” weeds in their sandbox, AKA Buried Swamp Cave, and named everything. My 18yo still writes stories based on those play times. Our current younger crew play “survival” and build shelters.

  92. Ha, I know it’s kind of old school, but we have a croquet set now. It’s our newest backyard fascination.

  93. One of my favorite backyard games is Koob.
    My kids have a much longer list (that might not include koob), including a variety of imaginative made up trampoline or super hero games with all of the neighborhood kids, soccer, football, or croquet (with non-traditional rules).
    Possibly the one backyard game that the whole family enjoys together is ladder golf.

  94. We love to play Volleyball with friends in the backyard. It can get pretty competitive……especially when we have more than one player with the same name!

  95. Happy Birthday, Ember Rising!!! We have loved this series so much, and the books all have a special place in my heart.
    My kids love to play pretend in the backyard still, but my favorite game was when we gave everyone different colors of silly string and said whoever has the least of someone else’s color on them at the end wins. The kids were running and spraying EVERYWHERE, it was a lot of fun.

  96. Our favorite backyard game is PVC sword fighting. My children have quit a homemade collection of various weapons.

  97. We like a good ole’ fashioned game of kickball! We get everyone in the family together as well as neighborhood families and play kids against adults….I think us adults playing is what draws the kids to the backyard! Then we celebrate with a bonfire and s’mores!

  98. We love all of your books! My son had a small obsession for awhile. And it was contagious for the rest of the family. We love to play kubbs, and capture the flag! We love chasing our chickens, rubbing and chasing the dogs and pups.

  99. We love playing wiffle ball with all ages from grandparents to littles. More can play and all get silly. Best memories and pics have been created. ?

  100. We currently don’t have a back yard but we live by a nature trail always walking along it looking for animals and cool bugs. Some days we ride our bike or scooters down the trail, and it always leads us to our favorite fishing spot! My kids always make believe wonderful adventures when we go down the trail.

  101. We like to play… filming of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy… as a family. We have so much fun acting out a parody. 🙂

  102. Tag, hide and seek, imaginative adventures like exploring the ‘hundred acre woods’, and climbing trees

  103. My 3 boys play baseball non-stop in our back yard for our three months of Alaskan summer. ⚾️ ⚾️ ⚾️

  104. We don’t currently have a backyard as we live overseas, but the kids do play on the flat roof upstairs which is the equivalent. Soccer or tag on roller blades are favorites!

  105. We love to play so many games in our yard…not in any particular order, baseball, football, soccer and tag. ?

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