Jeanne DuPrau's City of Ember is a YA book aimed at grades 4-7. I read it because it was recommended by my daughter, who (thus far) is not much of a fantasy fan. She thinks the Harry Potter books are too scary, and she couldn't get into Peter and the Starcatchers. But she assured me that City of Ember was "my kind of book." She was right. In fact, I'm starting to wonder if I fall into the YA target audience better than adult spec-fic. (See, for instance, the rave review I gave to Little Brother).
I very much enjoyed City of Ember. Yes, the plot was somewhat simple and predictable. However, the world was quite unique and the characters sympathetic and lovable. Sometimes it is refreshing to read a short, no-nonsense fantasy tale--just the way you liked them when you were a kid.