Sunday, December 31, 2017

Mr. Penumbra's 24-hour Bookstore

In the final hours of 2017, I finished my "Read 12 books in 2017" personal challenge by completing Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan.

This 2012 hardcover copy I received from the library labeled this book as sci-fi/fantasy and typically that is not my genre, and to my pleasure I found that labeling frankly to be incorrect.

I don't know what you call this genre, but it certainly is fiction written in a casual style, incorporating contemporary and future driven themes and and perhaps a tone of nerdy intrigue.

Yes, nerdy intrigue. This book seems to be written with nerds at heart. Especially contemporary nerds who love to think about technology.

The scene of this story is set in San Francisco with characters who designed website, worked for Industrial Light and Magic, and Google. They talk about things in this book like web page coding, OCR (Optical Character Recognition), and Google work culture. Oh yes, and books. 

This modern realism in many ways captures a unique period in history. This book is certainly not for everyone (i.e those who could care less about algorithms stay home). Sloan's book is surprisingly lovely in the way it unfolds and exceeded expectations.

Added surprise bonus for me was when I laid the book down the other evening and turned out the light and found out the book cover was glow in the dark. Never have I read a book with a glow in the dark cover.

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