Recent Reads – Mr. Penumbras 24 hours book store

If you are unfamiliar with the “Recent Reads” series, click here for an explanation.
Short story even shorter: I tell you about books I have recently read (came as quite a surprise, regarding the title, hm?)

Reading essentials

Now that fall is here and the weather has been cold and grey again, I have been in the mood for tea, a blanket and a good book.
Not that I mind a good book all year round, the one I will be talking about today was read throughout the height of summer, but reading when the rain is pouring outside is my idea of a cozy evening.

Mr. Penumbra´s 24 hour book store is one I picked because of the cover from my Skoobe library (I have since cancelled my membership as I was disappointed with the selection they offer) and once again enjoyed a lot.
It was written by Robin Sloan, a 36 year old american writer and IT business engineer, currently living in San Francisco.

Mr. Penumbra´s 24 hours book store

The topic:
Former web designer and long-time roleplaying nerd Clay Jannon starts working the night shift at a very strange 24 hours book store. What is meant to be a filler job to pay the rent fastly becomes a fascinating puzzle:
What is hidden in the “forbidden books section” he isn’t allowed to touch?
Who are the strange customers that seem to use the books in there to solve an ancient mystery?
And what does it need to get the attention of Kat, good-looking and fiercly intelligent Google girl?

Relying on his former RPG role as rogue he gathers his missing party members (fighter and mage) and ventures deep into a secret society, relying on the modern magic of Google and the WWW to investigate their secrets.

Did I like it?
One thing you may not yet know about me is that I have been playing RPG since I turned 14, and even now, a grown-up woman aged 36, I still meet up with some friends once a month to throw some dice and imagine I am a magician.
This book combines mystery, books and roleplaying adventures, and it does in the best possible way. Before you think that only fellow nerds out there will appreciate it (I know some of you are), rest assured that it is a book that even someone who hasn’t read the “Dragonlance” chronicles (they play an important role in solving the riddle) will enjoy.
Despite dealing with the topics of friendship, eternal life and the growing belief that the internet provides the answer to all our questions, leading us to rely too much on Google and too little on our personal experience, it is an easy read, but one that will leave you with food for thoughts and appreciation of the everyday magic around you.

Who do I recommend it to?
Fellow RPGlers, obviously.
Anyone looking for some adventure in their everyday life. You know it is there, hidden beneath something as boring as your day to day job!
Anyone interested to learn more about how Google actually works. The book provides interesting insight into work flow and the companies ideas.

Anyone else read this one before? How do you feel about it?
And who has tried RPGs (be it classic or computer based) before?


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