By Robin Sloan
A gleeful and exhilarating story of world conspiracy, complicated code-breaking, high-tech facts visualization, younger love, rollicking event, and the key to everlasting life—mostly set in a hole-in-the-wall San Francisco bookstore
The nice Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon out of his lifestyles as a San Francisco Web-design drone—and serendipity, sheer interest, and the power to climb a ladder like a monkey has landed him a brand new gig operating the evening shift at Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour bookstall. yet after quite a few days at the task, Clay starts off to achieve that this shop is much more curious than the identify indicates. there are just a few consumers, yet they arrive in again and again and not appear to really purchase whatever, as an alternative “checking out” impossibly vague volumes from unusual corners of the shop, all in accordance with a few complex, long-standing association with the gnomic Mr. Penumbra. the shop needs to be a entrance for anything higher, Clay concludes, and shortly he’s launched into a fancy research of the customers’ habit and roped his acquaintances into aiding to determine simply what’s occurring. yet when they convey their findings to Mr. Penumbra, it seems the secrets and techniques expand a long way outdoor the partitions of the bookstore.
With impossible to resist brio and spectacular intelligence, Robin Sloan has crafted a literary experience tale for the twenty-first century, evoking either the fairy-tale attraction of Haruki Murakami and the enthusiastic novel-of-ideas wizardry of Neal Stephenson or a tender Umberto Eco, yet with a special and feisty sensibility that’s infrequent to the realm of literary fiction. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore is precisely what it appears like: an institution you'll want to input and may by no means are looking to depart, a modern day cupboard of wonders able to supply a jolt of strength to each curious reader, regardless of the time of day.
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It was raining the night they came. " She ran trembling fingers over the silver hilt of the knife at her belt. " Darken Rahl had wanted Jennsen dead because she had been born ungifted. Any ruler of that bloodline killed offspring such as she. Richard and Kahlan believed that a person's life was their own to live, and that birth did not qualify that right. Jennsen's haunted eyes turned up to Richard. " With one arm, Richard pulled Jennsen into a tender embrace. They all understood such terrible loss.
Women like her—Confessors—dared not dream of love. Because of Richard, she had dared and had gained it. Kahlan shuddered to think of the terrible times she had feared he was dead, or worse. There had been so many times she had ached to be with him, to simply feel his warm touch, or to even be granted the mercy of knowing he was safe. Jennsen glanced at Richard and Kahlan to see that neither took Cara's admonition as anything but fond heckling. Kahlan supposed that to a stranger, especially one from the land of D'Hara, as was Jennsen, Cara's gibes at Richard would defy reason; guards did not bait their masters, especially when their master was the Lord Rahl, the master of D'Hara.
She knew that he needed to be left alone about it. Pestering him for answers before he had them only served to distract him from what he needed to do. Watching Richard's back as he walked away, Jennsen finally forced a smile of agreement. Then, as if struck with another thought, her eyes widened. " Jennsen nodded. "I'll help. " For the time being, Kahlan kept her worries to herself as she circled an arm around the young woman's shoulders in an appreciative embrace and walked her back toward the wagon.