Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore

Thank you Geraldine. Amy and I love and adore you. And you recommended what I think was my favorite fiction book of 2013.

I read Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore: A Novel yesterday on the couch during digital sabbath. It was just wonderful. I wasn’t really sure what to make of it for the first fifteen minutes other than knowing that Geraldine and Amy said that I would love it.

By minute 30 I couldn’t put it down. And two hours later I was done. And smiling. And thinking that I should go read all the Anne McCaffrey Dragonriders of Pern books again. They were childhood favorites and – while having no direct relationship to this book – things that were referenced kept making me think of them.

The characters of wonderful. I especially love Penumbra, Clay, and Kat. But the intricate flavors, mix, interactions, and crossover between the world of Google and the world of dusty old book stores was just delicious.

If you want something light, beautiful, clever, and full of awesomeness to read over New Years, try this one.

  • My wife had me read that one as well this year, definitely my favorite fiction book I read this year. Just enough reality to hook you in.

  • I just loved that book as well!! didn’t want it to end –

  • where sorcery and google meet

    • Perfect description.

  • Kelly James

    Thanks for the post, now I’m going to revisit it. I really loved the book at the beginning and about 60% through I lost interest… not exactly sure why.

    • Hmm. There were a few slow points – sounds like you hit one. It ends very strong.

  • JT

    Great brain candy – the short prequal Ajax Penumbra 1969 is equally tasty

  • everywhereist

    Aww, I love you guys, too! I’m so, so glad you liked the book. Rand made me read it, and I loved it so much, I had to foist it upon someone else. 🙂 I felt like it managed to show that books and technology can live together rather harmoniously. Just like they do in my house.

    Oh, and Amy’s recommendation of The Secret History was a good one – turned out to be one of MY favorite books of the year, too.

    • Reciprocal book love!

  • MoreyBean

    What a great read! Thank you Brad! It reminds me of being in Mumbai with my two sources of immortality in a rickety but clean little hotel, telling them about the essential “You Can Negotiate Anything” by Herb Cohen, and sensing their appropriate “OK Dad” attitude, I marched downstairs and a half block away to a little, packed bookstore not unlike Mr. Penumbra’s. I asked the bright bookkeeper if he had a copy, which he whisked in front of me with the speed of a successful Google search! 50 or so rupees and I was back in our room, extolling Mr. Cohen’s virtues to my young apprentices. I hope they still have the copy, but noticed that the ebook, pdf and paperback are waiting for us, if need be. Happy New Year!