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Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore Audiobook

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore: A Novel

The Great Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon out of his life as a San Francisco Web-design drone - and serendipity, sheer curiosity, and the ability to climb a ladder like a monkey has landed him a new gig working the night shift at Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. But after just a few days on the job, Clay begins to realize that this store is even more curious than the name suggests. There are only a few customers, but they come in repeatedly and never seem to actually buy anything....
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Publisher's Summary

A gleeful and exhilarating tale of global conspiracy, complex code-breaking, high-tech data visualization, young love, rollicking adventure, and the secret to eternal life - mostly set in a hole-in-the-wall San Francisco bookstore.

The Great Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon out of his life as a San Francisco Web-design drone - and serendipity, sheer curiosity, and the ability to climb a ladder like a monkey has landed him a new gig working the night shift at Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. But after just a few days on the job, Clay begins to realize that this store is even more curious than the name suggests. There are only a few customers, but they come in repeatedly and never seem to actually buy anything, instead “checking out” impossibly obscure volumes from strange corners of the store, all according to some elaborate, long-standing arrangement with the gnomic Mr. Penumbra. The store must be a front for something larger, Clay concludes, and soon he’s embarked on a complex analysis of the customers’ behavior and roped his friends into helping to figure out just what’s going on. But once they bring their findings to Mr. Penumbra, it turns out the secrets extend far outside the walls of the bookstore.

With irresistible brio and dazzling intelligence, Robin Sloan has crafted a literary adventure story for the 21st century, evoking both the fairy-tale charm of Haruki Murakami and the enthusiastic novel-of-ideas wizardry of Neal Stephenson or a young Umberto Eco, but with a unique and feisty sensibility that’s rare to the world of literary fiction. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore is exactly what it sounds like: an establishment you have to enter and will never want to leave, a modern-day cabinet of wonders ready to give a jolt of energy to every curious listener, no matter the time of day.

©2012 Robin Sloan (P)2012 Macmillan Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (6088 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Antonio Aguilar 11-23-15 Member Since 2014
    ratings
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    18
    4
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    Story
    "Entertaining and Intriguing"

    This book is very entertaining, specially the first part when all the characters are being discovered and presented by the main character. The story tries and somewhat succeeds in solving the intriguing "what is the future of the book" question and also the way in which we, as a race, will come to share knowledge in the years to come. But it is also a detective story, not very strong, but very funny and entertaining. Young adults will like the references to today's leading internet companies and more mature readers will be delighted with all historic references and the way the writer jokes about his own storyline.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    N. B. NY State, USA 11-21-15
    N. B. NY State, USA 11-21-15 Member Since 2015
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    7
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    Story
    "A delight"

    I couldn't stop listening. It's only in retrospect that I realized this is a version The Hero's Journey, but it's membership in that club doesn't feel formulaic at all. Enjoy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angela M. Dokos Georgia 11-19-15
    Angela M. Dokos Georgia 11-19-15 Member Since 2013

    angie

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting and entertaining"

    This isn't a book I would have probably chosen on my own, so I am glad it was recommended to me. I really enjoyed it. Different from what I usually read. It is very interesting. It's a fun read! I liked it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Rose 11-15-15
    Mary Rose 11-15-15
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    "delightful story"

    particularly fun listen. enjoyed this while cruise Mediterranean. made it even more magical recall all the familiar place in San Francisco.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Bacon Georgia, USA 11-11-15
    Chris Bacon Georgia, USA 11-11-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Hail Google"

    While the story is interesting, I couldn't help but feel the authors overly romantic views on google weren't founded in reality. It read almost like a pamphlet for working at Google.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dawn Furlo 11-11-15
    Dawn Furlo 11-11-15 Member Since 2011
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    10
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    "Excellent!"

    Kept my interest through the entire book. Really enjoyed the audio version. Take the time to read this enjoyable book and smile occasionally through it. It was quite a wonderful journey.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anne Marie McLaughlin 11-10-15
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    14
    2
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    Story
    "I didn't want it to end!"

    This is a book to get sunk into. The names and my image of that bookstore rolled around in my head even when I wasn't listening to it. I loved it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tanya Dunedin, New Zealand 10-27-15
    Tanya Dunedin, New Zealand 10-27-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fun story"

    This was enjoyable and fun. Worth my time. It was a light break from some recent more heavy reads.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alex 10-26-15
    Alex 10-26-15
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    "loved it!"

    I really enjoyed this book and was enthralled the entire time. Great quick listen. 10/10

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JessS 10-24-15
    JessS 10-24-15 Member Since 2014
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    7
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    "Surprisingly Wonderful Read"
    Any additional comments?

    I was pleasantly surprised by this book. The plot and characters were interesting and the narrator did a really great job!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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