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Publisher's Summary

The author of the Mistborn trilogy and Elantris, Brandon Sanderson is winning abundant praise for this rollicking - and unusual - tale. Alcatraz Smedry can’t exactly be described as someone who doesn’t break things. In fact, he breaks lots of things. The truth is, he’s a major klutz. Breaking things, however, might just be the ace in the hole he needs when he goes up against a cabal of nefarious (gasp!) librarians.

©2007 Brandon Sanderson (P)2011 Recorded Books,LLC

Critic Reviews

“Like Lemony Snicket and superhero comics rolled into one (and then revved up on steroids).” (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    1,285
  • 4 Stars
    842
  • 3 Stars
    349
  • 2 Stars
    97
  • 1 Stars
    40

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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    1,528
  • 4 Stars
    615
  • 3 Stars
    199
  • 2 Stars
    33
  • 1 Stars
    22

Story

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    1,146
  • 4 Stars
    740
  • 3 Stars
    367
  • 2 Stars
    103
  • 1 Stars
    48
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  • JARED
  • ALBUQUERQUE, NM, United States
  • 08-19-12

Highly Entertaining + Great Narration

This book was fantastic. You can really tell Brandon Sanderson thoroughly enjoyed writing this series. A really fun read from Sanderson after his longer, and much more serious, fantasy epics. Very enjoyable right now, but wish this was a book I could have read in middle school.

The narrator does a fantastic job. Please ignore reviews complaining about ENUNCIATION. A couple times he does pronounce words strangely, but it really only contributes to the fun silliness of this week. When it comes down to it, he captures the wit and attitude of the narration perfectly. I had been reluctant for months because of that ridiculous review. Very glad I finally gave it a chance.

31 of 32 people found this review helpful

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ASPIRING ASIMOV'S

THAT'S LIBRARIAN TALK
The five stars are for 11-13 year olds. Drop a star overall for adults. I think 13 year olds will love this. It is entertaining, funny and different. I say different, but it also reminded me of an older Wimpy Kid. The idea of an alternative world and this world being secretly run by librarians is great. I normal don't like it when the author talks to the audience, but it worked very well for this book.

CANICEDE
I do think books like this will help turn more kids into readers. I also love the way they learn without lectures, about how to open your mind and not to believe things because everyone else does.

EDIBLE EDDINGS
Once again I am amazed in Brandon Sanderson and his ability to dream up new and different magic worlds. Lots of writers, come up with one good universe and build their whole career around it, while BS comes up with totally different magic systems for every book or series.

Narrator was good

38 of 41 people found this review helpful

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  • Joe
  • Modesto, CA
  • 07-20-12

Incredibly good!

OK - I did not want to read this book - I typically hate young adult/children books. The story in this was actually quite good. This is truly a story for all audiences. It is funny, interesting, engaging, light-hearted, and all-around fun. I recommend it!

32 of 35 people found this review helpful

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  • Ryan
  • Springfield, MO, United States
  • 05-11-12

Really bad title, really good book.

Would you listen to Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians again? Why?

Yes, in a few years I might revisit it.

Any additional comments?

Sanderson fans should not be afraid of the Alcatraz novels because they are "for kids", if you felt Harry Potter was adult enough then these will be to. If your a fantasy fan looking for something fun but light between your epic fantasy books, this is it.

22 of 25 people found this review helpful

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Great story although suited to a younger crowd.

Interesting story this one and as good as always from Brandon Sanderson. Clearly written for a younger crowd but enjoyable anyway.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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First, let me say that I am a Sanderson fanatic!

Brandon Sanderson is a gifted storyteller, world builder and creator of unique magical systems. That's the first thing that you need to know. I've read/listened to his work since he accepted the responsibility of finishing up "The Wheel of Time" series after Jordan's passing. He immediately became my favorite author! I have kids, and wanted to get them interested in reading. My oldest daughter was not latching on to the "girlie" books that my wife was getting her, then it hit me: Sanderson wrote a kids book! You see, my daughter is more like me. Naturally, I thought that her reading interest might lean toward my own. I bought the audiobook here on audible and gave it a listen. Then, I purchased a hard copy of this book and have started reading it to both of my girls aloud. They were instantly hooked!
As I said, I'm a WOT fan, so I've been spoiled to hearing the amazing talents of Michael Kramer and Kate Reading. Most of the time, when I begin listening to a book with a different narrator I am very disappointed. Not so with Ramon De Ocampo! He does an admirable job of conveying emotion and character into the story.
Overall, this is a fun tale of adventure that kids and parents can enjoy together.

24 of 28 people found this review helpful

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Fun

We listen to this book on a long car trip. My kids were laughing out loud...and were disappointed when we arrived because they wanted to finish the story

13 of 15 people found this review helpful

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Strangely annoying

Don't get me wrong. I love Brandon Sanderson's work as a whole -- in fact, this is probably the only book of his I am really struggling to like. It just... Annoyed me. Perhaps it would be a better book if I had read it instead of listened to it, or if someone else had narrated it. But the whole thing had a slightly whiny tone to it. Most of the self imposed humor was jarring and, as the author repeatedly notes, annoying.

Putting my annoyance aside, the writing isn't absolutely terrible. It is very purposefully the type of book it is. It is possible that if you like Terry Pratchett you would like this story. It tries to be very tongue in cheek, intentionally annoying (once again, a fact stated multiple times by the "author" of the story), and witty in its comparisons to other "unnamed" works. It just wasn't for me.

12 of 14 people found this review helpful

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I'm Speechless!!!

Oh yes i'm speechless... I'm a huge fan of Brandon Sanderson and I think his work is honestly perfect.. I postponed reading this book from its title... I just thought its too weird... but then from its introduction i was laughing out loud!!!

Brandon did it again, I red the way of kings and mistborn and his other books, and i thought that i know now what kind of books he writes.. but this was different and really funny.. Funny doesn't even cover it, i keep on laughing while reading this book, its sooo good.

Alcatraz is a funny and interesting character, and although this book is made for young adult, it shouldn't really count... its for all ages!1

Great job Brandon Sanderson, keep it up!!!

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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So much fun!

I'm a fan of Brandon Sanderson from Mistborn, Warbreaker, Alloy of Law, and Elantris. Hoping to get a little more of my fix, I tried out these "teen" books. I laughed and laughed my way through the whole set of 4, and I dearly hope he will finish it out with book 5 as he has promised. The humor is snarky and certainly some of it is above the level of many pre-teen kids. They won't miss what they don't get, but you'll laugh yourself silly. The narration is superb, truly top-notch. The plot is ridiculous, but is *supposed* to be. I highly recommend this to anyone who likes fantasy, snarky humor, and poking fun at oneself, other authors, the genre, and book-writing in general.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful