Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians, by Brandon Sanderson

Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians, by Brandon Sanderson

Title: Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Pages: 320
Originally Published: 2007
Format I Read: Audio Book (via Playback)
Publisher: Scholastic
Rating: [rating:4]

So, Alcatraz is a foster kid. It’s his thirteenth birthday. And he receives a package from his parents that contain his inheritance. It’s a bag of sand. And this little bag of sand leads Alcatraz to discover the truth. The world known to him up until that time is controlled by the evil librarians. And he is actually a direct descendant of the Smedrys, a powerful family in the non-librarian controlled part of the world. And those sands? Important.

It’s fun. And quirky. All of the Smedrys have special powers that come in handy in surprising ways. Alcatraz’s, for example, is the ability to break things. While I enjoyed this overall, there were times that the quirkiness grated on my nerves just a little bit. But then there would be these kind of gems:

The ending of a book is…both the best and the worst part to read. For the ending will often decide whether you love or hate the book. Both emotions lead to disappointment. If the ending was good, and the book was worth your time, then you are left annoyed and depressed because there is no more book to read. However, if the ending was bad, then it’s too late to stop reading. You’re left annoyed and depressed because you spent so much time on a book with a bad ending. Therefore, reading is obviously worthless, and you should go spend your time on other, more valuable pursuits.

It’s very “meta,” as in Alcatraz explains the use of narrative devices and how he often subverts expectations. That made it interesting for me as an adult. And I think kids will like the clever story. I’d recommend this fun and quick read for pretty much all ages.

Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians, by Brandon Sanderson [rating:4]