Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Are you enjoying Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore?

  Is Project Gutenberg the path to universal literacy or heretical?  What are the source codes and will Clay be able to discover them in time?  Do Penumbra's customers come to the store to discover the hidden riches or simply to buy a book to read? Should it matter? Is that really what the Google Campus looks like?
  I hope you will take some time, in this post Christmas week to put down that Cookie or Egg Nog and tell us what you are thinking. I will tell you, I am enjoying figuring out what is real, and what is real only in Robin Sloan's imagination.  I look forward to your comments!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Thoughts On Our Current Read

What a difference two thousand years make!  Since finishing The Dovekeepers, set in 70 C.E., we are now reading Robin Sloan's Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, set primarily in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2012.  This book is part Da Vinci Code and part 1984, with a "dash" of Dashiell Hammett thrown in for good measure. It's a book for book lovers in all forms, but certainly with a nod to those of us struggling with the hardback or e reader question. As a fan of both, I am reading it in hardback form, enjoing the pages and the glow in the dark cover. 
  The book starts with our protagonist, walking the up and down streets of San Francisco on a job hunt. Clay Jannon has an art-school thesis on typography, a year at a bagel shop and a three-page website, but needs a job.  He has searched on line and found nothing, but has turned to "paper" and now has several want ads crumpled in his pocket. It is a HELP WANTED sign that finally lures him in.  The window sign in Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore reads:
Late Shift
Specific Requirements
Good Benefts
The interview is set and Mr. Penumbra starts Clay on his job skills test, on the top of a ladder, searching for a book that is "about 150 percent of one arm length to my left. Obviously I need to return to the floor and scoot the ladder over. But down below, Penumbra is shouting, "Lean, my boy! Lean!" And wow, do I ever want this job."
  And off we go....

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

January Title and Special Author Event Announcementt

Robin Sloan, author of Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore to appear

CapRadio Reads is  excited to announce a Special Author Event !  Our January title will be Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, and to herald the official launch of CapRadio Reads, the book's author, Robin Sloan, will be in our Community Room to discuss his book with our Morning Edition host Donna Apidone. Our first Authors Evening will be held Tuesday, January 8, 2013 at 6:30 PM. 
"In a time when actual books are filling up tag-sale dollar boxes, along with VHS tapes and old beepers, Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore reminds us that there is an intimate, adventurous joy in the palpable papery things called novels, and in the warm little secret societies we used to call 'bookstores'.  Robin Sloan's novel is delightfully funny, provacative, deft and even thrilling. And for reasons more than just nostalgia, I could not stop turning the actual pages"  - John Hodgman
If you are a member of Capital Public Radio you will also receive a special gift at this event. If you aren't a member already, now is the perfect time to join, so you don't miss out so please
 join Capital Public Radio  now. 
Space is limited so click on the Special Author Event at the top of this post to reserve your tickets.
See you there, and thanks for reading.

What did YOU think?

Our group of CapRadio Readers met last night in the Community Room at Capital Public Radio, and as always, it was a lively discussion. We wished you were there, but hope you will join in now.  Did you find The Dovekeepers and interesting read?  Our group, for the most part, liked the book, but all were amazed at the history of  Masada.  How strong were the beliefs and faith of the nine hundred Jews, who had held out for months against Roman attacks, to do what they ultimately had to do to "escape"?
Of the four women, who had the most compelling story?  How did these women grow and change during their time at Masada?
Our discussion last night veered into the current situation in the Middle East.  We compared the warriors of Masada to the political warriors of today's Israel. In Dovekeepers, among the Jews there are different sects. Yael's sister, Nahara, leaves her sect to join the Essenes'.  How different these two sects are, is reflected in the different views in today's Israel.
We hope you enjoyed the book, and I sincerely hope to hear from you.  Tell us if you did, or did not and why, and let us know how you like our new program.  Please follow us on this blog, or if you can, join us in the Community Room, the second Tuesday of every month. Just click JOIN THE CLUB  and you're in.  Coming soon, the title announcement for January.

Happy Reading!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Attend our meeting

CapRadio Reads meeting Tuesday, December 11 at 6:30PM

We will be discussing our December title, The Dovekeepers, by Alice Hoffman in The Community Room tomorrow night.  To attend, please go the PLEASE JOIN button on our website
If you cannot attend in person, please follow our conversation on this blog, starting Wednesday.  

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Special Events and Authors’ Evenings

From time to time we will host special CapRadio Reads member events including special Authors’ Evenings as well as readings and signings to be held both at the Station and around the community. Our first Author’s Evening will be January 8, 2013 at 6:30 PM in our Community Room in Sacramento  This event will feature Robin Sloan, author of the highly acclaimed new book, Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore. Our special events will be offered first to CapRadio Reads members and then to all of our listeners. If you’re a current member of Capital Public Radio, you will also receive a special gift at each event. If you haven’t already, be sure to join Capital Public Radio now, so you don't miss out.

Save the Date! Our next author’s event is tentatively scheduled for May 7, 2013 featuring John Lescroart and the launch of his new book, The Ophelia Cut.

Suggested Supplemental Reading

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Thoughts On Our Current Read

Masada From Josephus to Hoffman

  Israeli soldiers take an oath: "Masada shall not fall again".  It is well known that if we learn from history, we will not make the same mistakes again. Flavius Jospehus told this story first, after he spoke to a survivor of Masada. In this incredible story of four women in 70 C.E. we see mistakes being made, souls being lost and heroic acts of sacrifice. 
  In the beginning of this book, we meet Yael, the daughter of the assasin, who's father has blamed her for the death of her own mother, during her birth. Their city is in ruins and they set out over the desert to escape the Roman warriors.  Their journey is many miles and many lifetimes. The people they meet, the animals they see, guide Yael's journey to Masada.  Once there, she is given a job, tending to the doves. Once more animals and birds and mysticism carry her further on her journey. Yael is learning her history as she lives it, and will struggle to keep that alive throughout the book.