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Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore
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ARCHIVE 2013 Group Reads > JANUARY 2013: Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore: Epilogue - End of Book Discussion (Contains Spoilers)

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message 1: by Kara, Moderator (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kara (KaraAyako) | 2976 comments This is for the remainder of the book and where you can discuss your overall impressions.

Congratulations on finishing! Don't forget to add your review here: http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/1...

This book counts for the following challenges:
The Every Year Challenge (published in 2012)
Baby Name Hunt (character named Mat)
History Challenge (new beginnings, main character is embarking on a new part of his life)
Monthly New Beginnings (1, 2, 4, 7)


Megan (LahaiRoi) | 1477 comments I just finished. Quirky, optimistic, and a great blend of the old books and the new digital age! And there's also a great bit of nerd thrown in as well. Definitely worth reading! 4.5 stars!


Carrie Garner | 29 comments I just finished it earlier today as well. What an interesting blend of old and new!


Nikki (dancernl) Finished it last night (on my Kindle, which seemed to take a beating in this book, lol) and very much enjoyed it. Almost wished it was a series.... almost. The ending seemed rushed but I'm glad it's a stand alone book in itself.


message 5: by Morgan (last edited Jan 05, 2013 02:28AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Morgan | 137 comments I really enjoyed this book! Fascinating mix of old and new technology, a creative storyline, great characters. Definitely appealed to the nerd in me! Thanks to whoever suggested it for this months group read, as I don't think that I would have read this otherwise!


Cherise (mousycherise) | 87 comments I just finished! I really loved it! I also read it on my kindle and I felt guilty at first, but I felt like in the end, it got a good vibe along with the new way of looking at things. I loved it all. No slow parts and it was completely not what I expected and left me guessing. I felt a bit stupid in some parts, like the 'Singularity' part. But I think it was more that I had never THOUGHT like that before and left me spinning. I loved it and I'm so happy that it was picked for a group read because I feel like it so easily can be over looked and not picked up to read.


message 7: by dean (last edited Jan 05, 2013 10:39PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

dean (allgodsarecarnivorous) | 5 comments All right, I guess I'll be the sourpuss:

This book was not my cup of tea.

I voted for this last month, too, so I was excited to pick it up. I wanted to like it. Unfortunately, I spent the book just feeling really annoyed. All the Google worship was obnoxious, the characters were flat, everything was too convenient, and the prose struck me as very *juvenile*. The whole book seemed very YA, which I hadn't expected.


Kathryn | 44 comments Finished this book this morning and have to say I really enjoyed reading it. I found it very easy to read - the writing seemed to have a lovely flow to it and although slightly unexpected ending I wasn't left disappointed with it and it tied up all loose ends! I would and have recommended this to family and friends to read.


Barb | 200 comments Did anyone else notice that the book cover glows in the dark? LOL


Cherise (mousycherise) | 87 comments Does it? I wish I'd seen this before I was at the bookstore earlier today. I would have held it to my face to see it when I saw it there. Next time I'll have to just to be able to say I saw that. xD


Talia (taliafrench) Barb wrote: "Did anyone else notice that the book cover glows in the dark? LOL"

OMG It scared the crap out of me! It was late at night and I'd just turned off my bedroom light for the night. I thought some evil spirit was coming out of the book.

This was a very enjoyable read. I loved Mr. Penumbra and Clay, as well as all of the supporting characters. The story just moved me right along to a satisfying end. I liked the message of the broken code and how immortality can truly be achieved.


Maria (ReeReads) | 144 comments I really enjoyed this book, even tho it is not something I would usually pick up- Did anyone else really like Kat? and being brought into Google headquarters? I loved the cafeteria part-And Did anyone else picture Mr Penumbra as the guy who is on "Sweet Genius" (food network)? LOL I kept hearing his voice and seeing his face


Maria (ReeReads) | 144 comments Barb wrote: "Did anyone else notice that the book cover glows in the dark? LOL"

I saw that there were 2 covers. Mine has the bookstore on the front. It isn't the yellow cover, But I am still going to see if it glows!


message 14: by Kara, Moderator (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kara (KaraAyako) | 2976 comments Awwww, I'm so bummed. I have the ebook--no book glowing for me.

So I have not been to the Google campus myself, but I do know people who work there. I really, really can't wait for one of them to read this book so I can find out how accurate the description of the cafeteria is.

And Audrey, it happens. I was actually getting a little concerned that the group seemed to universally like the book--that doesn't seem right, and it doesn't generate interesting conversation.


catherine | 7 comments Just finished reading this; had I paid for the book myself, I would have been disappointed, however I found it an engaging, easy read with lots of imagination - it took me back to young teenage years when I used to love adventure-type stories! It's a shame about the unnecessary sexual references etc, since otherwise I could have passed this on to my little sister.


Karina (karinargh) | 609 comments I liked the book - to me it was a comfort-read, like a mac'n cheese in book form - but I also found it a bit... too polished, maybe?

But I always like a book that makes me aware of topics I want to learn more about, so now I go searching for a book about Google!


Kathryn | 446 comments I enjoyed the book on the whole. But it was not what I was expecting and was more sci-fi, I guess, than I was expecting. I read it in October last year and think I got taken in by the title, more than anything else (a 24 hour bookstore - wow - how fantastic would that be!!). I didn't expect all the computer geek stuff especially the terminology. I don't still have the book, but I know there were parts where Clay was describing what he was doing or going to do which went way over my head but I thought in 50 - 100 years when people read this, I bet they're amazed at how technologically behind we were!! It would be like reading a book nowadays about someone writing code for MS-DOS!


Karina (karinargh) | 609 comments I didn't even notice any especially geeky stuff, haha. It's funky how a book looks different to different people. :)


Chelsea (Cnicole322) | 87 comments I enjoyed this book's quirkiness and humor, but the ending left me kinda disappointed, so I gave it three stars. I listened to it on audiobook, which was nice, because I got to hear the different voices he uses for the audiobook HE listens to in the story! So that was pretty neat. I think I would have missed out if I had read the physical book rather than the audiobook.


Laney | 4 comments I finished this book last night. It was a great reprieve from the biographical and historical accounts that I've been reading lately.

Overall I did enjoy it. It was quirky, fun and did have some intelligence to it (I had to look up several words). I really liked the characters of Mat, Penumbra and Clay. I didn't mind the nerdery; I found it endearing.

Things I didn't care for: Kat disappointed me when she flaked out on Clay after the "Great Decoding" failed. I also thought the ending was a HUGE, mega-disappointment. It felt like the writer got tired of the project, or was fast approaching her deadline, because the story just seemed to... stop. And that was it. I left the book not really understanding the greatness of of Manutius' message. That having friends is the greatest thing ever? That fell kind of flat with me what with the obsessive, secretive nature of the whole fellowship... to have such a naively simplistic answer to the whole thing? Maybe that's the point, but I felt jilted of some really great ending. It just fizzled for me.

Either way, I am happy I read the book. It was a nice trip outside my usual picks.


Jessica | 177 comments Just finished the book. Overall I enjoyed it. I give it 4 stars.

A nice mix of old school (print books) and new (technology). I would love to spend hours in Mr. Penumbra's bookstore. I could practically smell the old book smell as I read through part 1. I did enjoy how this book brought together the OK (old knowledge) and the technology we live with today.

As far as characters go here are my thoughts:
Clay- nice blend of geek and humor. I did laugh out loud at a few parts. He is a relatable character.
Mr. penumbra - my favorite character in the book. I would have liked to know more about him and his past. We got snippets of him and his work with technology. I would like to read his codex, possibly a sequel???
Kat- liked her at first, but diet after she got the PM position at Google. Just seems like the power went to her head. You totally get it when she transitions from the BAM shirts to the houndstooth blazer.
Neal- fun supporting character. Great how Clay was the popular kid in 6th grade and now Neal is the successful entrepreneur.

Did anyone else google (sorry for the pun) Gerritszoon?

I agree with some other reviewers about the whole google worship thing. It did get to be a little gushy at times. But from the description in the book it sounds amazing. I think I'm going to look for a non fiction book about Google.

Kara - curious what your friends will say when you ask if the descriptions are accurate.

Overall it was a good, quick read. Glad I joined this group read, I never would have found this book on my own.


Laney | 4 comments I did Google Gerritzoon! It was on my phone and I didn't read much, so I'm still not sure if it's fictional or not.


message 23: by dean (new) - rated it 1 star

dean (allgodsarecarnivorous) | 5 comments Haha I googled Gerritszoon too. It is fictional, but I saw there's some discussion that it's based on the Poliphilus font.


Jessica | 177 comments Audrey- thanks for the info I'm going to check out the poliphilus font. I'm ad that the gerritszoon isn't a real font. I was hoping it was real :)


Candiss (Tantara) | 357 comments I finally saw my hold pop up for this at the library, and once I started reading I couldn't stop! Having now finished, I'm genuinely impressed by the author's ability to synergize so many disparate elements. I have always enjoyed this sort of quest story. I'll chew on it some more and have my review in the next couple of days. I also want to go through the discussions here to see what others have said.


Nathaly | 366 comments Finished a few days ago and really liked it, gave it 4 stars


Melissa (missie322) | 210 comments I just finished and I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. I was totally caught off guard on what I thought the book would be about. The whole "Google" thing was kind of annoying after a while, but I knew the author was trying to prove the "old vs. new" point. Some of the computer, teckie lingo left me lost. I would recommend it but I don't usually read books like this.


Sarah (Soelo) | 24 comments I loved this book! I told my husband it was getting creepy as soon as he found the face in his 3-D model. The part in the reading room was a great nail-biter and though the resolution was a neat package, I think I would have been annoyed if there had not been any resolution or if there was something in the text after all. The overlap of OK and technology is very hipster, so it is appropriate that they visit Brooklyn =)


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