By Robin Sloan
A Winner of the Alex Award, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times e-book Prize for First Fiction, named a most sensible publication of the 12 months by way of NPR, Los Angeles Times, and San Francisco Chronicle
The nice Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon clear of existence as a San Francisco web-design drone and into the aisles of Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour book shop. yet after a couple of days at the task, Clay discovers that the shop is extra curious than both its identify or its gnomic proprietor may possibly recommend. the shoppers are few, and so they by no means appear to purchase anything―instead, they "check out" huge, imprecise volumes from unusual corners of the shop. Suspicious, Clay engineers an research of the clientele's habit, looking support from his variously gifted pals. but if they convey their findings to Mr. Penumbra, they realize the bookstore's secrets and techniques expand some distance past its partitions. Rendered with impossible to resist brio and excellent intelligence, Robin Sloan's Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore is precisely what it seems like: an institution you might want to input and may by no means are looking to leave.
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Extra info for Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore: A Novel
Whatever goes to be burned. The library is in ny urban, yet not anyone is aware where—not but. Oliver Grone goes to climb in during the fireplace get away and run the shop for no less than a number of hours on a daily basis to maintain Tyndall and the remaining all happy. probably Oliver can study a bit extra concerning the Unbroken backbone alongside the best way. As for me: i've got my quest. the arriving time at the different finish of Penumbra’s train—of path he may take the train—is nonetheless days sooner or later. without delay he’s chugging during the heart of the rustic, and if I paintings speedy, i will head him off on the cross. convinced: i will be able to intercept him and rescue him. i will be able to set issues correct and get my task again. i will be able to discover what precisely is happening. I inform Kat approximately it all, as i'm changing into acquainted with doing. It seems like loading a very difficult math challenge right into a laptop. I simply key in the entire variables, push go back, and: “It won’t work,” she says. “Penumbra is an outdated guy. i am getting the sensation this factor has been a part of his existence for a very long time. I suggest, it essentially is his lifestyles, correct? ” “Right, so—” “So I don’t imagine you’ll get him to only … surrender. Like, I’ve been at Google for, what, 3 years? That’s rarely a life-time. yet even now you couldn’t simply meet me on the educate station and inform me to show round. This corporation is an important a part of my lifestyles. It’s crucial a part of me. I’d stroll correct prior you. ” She’s correct, and it’s disconcerting, either since it skill I’ll want a new plan and since, whereas i will realize the reality in what she’s asserting, it doesn’t truly make any experience to me. I’ve by no means felt that approach a few task (or a cult). you'll cease me on the educate station and speak me into something. “But i believe you want to completely visit New York,” Kat says. “Okay, now I’m harassed. ” “This is simply too attention-grabbing to not pursue. What’s the choice? locate one other task and spend perpetually brooding about what occurred on your outdated boss? ” “Well, that’s certainly plan B—” “Your first intuition used to be correct. You’ve simply received to be more”—she pauses and handbags her lips—“strategic. And you’ve obtained to take me with you. ” She grins. evidently. How am i able to say no? “Google has an enormous long island office,” Kat says, “and I’ve by no means been there, so I’ll simply say i would like to head meet the crew. My supervisor may be positive with that. What approximately you? ” What approximately me? i've got a quest and i've an best friend. Now all i want is a shopper. allow me provide you with a few recommendation: make associates with a millionaire while he’s a friendless sixth-grader. Neel Shah has lots of friends—investors, staff, different entrepreneurs—but on a few point they recognize, and he understands, that they're buddies with Neel Shah, CEO. against this, i'm, and continuously could be, associates with Neel Shah, dungeon grasp. it really is Neel who may be my customer. His domestic serves double accountability as his company’s headquarters. again while San Francisco used to be younger, Neel’s position was once a large brick firehouse; this present day, it’s a large brick techno-loft with fancy audio system and superfast net. Neel’s corporation spreads out at the firehouse flooring, the place nineteenth-century firemen used to consume nineteenth-century chili and inform nineteenth-century jokes.