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Alcatraz versus the evil librarians by brandon sanderson

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Alcatraz versus the evil librarians by brandon sanderson

  1. 1. Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians by Brandon Sanderson - Book Review By Paul Stotts You're being brainwashed. No, not by me. I'm not that clever and devious, nor do I possess the evil gene necessary for such a task (which disqualifies me from running for public office. Or being one of the pageant parents on Toddlers and Tiaras). My talents lie elsewhere. Like my ability to write completely meaningless asides. Like this one. It's not much of a talent, I'll admit, but it beats being able to name all the episodes of Star Trek in thirty seconds. So back to my point. The one about your gray matter being laundered in a Maytag on infinite auto-cycle. See, everything you've been taught in your life, is a lie. A big, Pinocchio nose-growing lie. Part of a conspiracy, really, to keep us ignorant. There was this dude, a really cool cat, lived a long time ago, name of Plato. Plato wrote about people tied up in a cave who could only see shadows projected on the cave wall in front of them. It's what they call an allegory; these cave people weren't seeing the true nature of things. Just a shadowy representation. Same thing with the movie The Matrix. Seems the Wachowski brothers knew this Plato dude, and thus, had no problem with ripping off his ideas. Anyway, back to this conspiracy that keeps you ignorant. Seems there's a powerful group out there that doesn't want you to know certain things. No, it's not the government. Take off the tin foil hat; we don't all need to move out to a gated compound in Idaho and start stockpiling weapons. This group is way more powerful than that; these guys make the politicians quake in their seven hundred dollar loafers and tailored power suits. So what group am I talking about? Why, the Death-Eaters, of course. Just kidding; I couldn't resist pulling your Dumbledore. Really, this group is far worse than those Voldemort groupies. So who is it? The Librarians. Alright, you can stop laughing now; I'll wait. Really, giggle hysterically, as much as you like, but I promise you, no matter how hard you laugh, your buttocks won't fall off. Besides I'm not joking about there being a Librarian conspiracy. See, these are evil Librarians I'm talking about. Now I know calling a librarian evil is
  2. 2. redundant; anyone ever exposed to that torture device called a card catalog already knows this. But their depravity goes even further than you think; their malicious lies know no bounds. Do you believe in physics? You shouldn't; it's a Librarian fantasy. C'mon, gravity made sense to you? Boy, are you gullible. (You know, the word gullible isn't even in the dictionary. Seriously, go check.) How about magic? Do you believe in it? You should (and not just in a young girl's heart); it's totally real. A big Lovin' Spoonful of real. Now we wouldn't know about this Librarian conspiracy here in the Hushlands if it wasn't for an enterprising thirteen year old named Alcatraz Smedry. Alcatraz decides to chronicle his battles with the evil Librarians, while revealing the deeper truth behind the Librarian conspiracy, in the autobiographical Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians. Autobiographical? The novel claims Brandon Sanderson wrote it-see, right there, on the cover, in small print. Well, pish posh I say to that. Do you believe everything you read? Brandon Sanderson is just Alcatraz's pseudonym, the one he uses to convince the Librarians that Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians is a fantasy novel, and not his memoirs. Tricky guy, that Alcatraz. So what makes Alcatraz so awesome that he can take on evil Librarians? His special Smedry talent: he can break things. Like doors, plates, and chickens. Really, he broke a chicken. But he doesn't take on evil Librarians alone. He has help: his grandfather, Leavenworth Smedry; a young Knight of Crystallia, Bastille, and cousins, Quentin and Sing Sing Smedry. Alcatraz wouldn't have even known about the evil Librarians if it hadn't been for the gift he received on his thirteenth birthday: a bag of sand. And not just any bag of sand, but a special bag of sand. Dare I say a magic bag of sand? At least that's what Grandpa Smedry tells him. Unfortunately it's quickly stolen by the Librarians (pesky card-cataloguers), leaving Alcatraz no choice but to attempt a dangerous Library infiltration in order to retrieve the sands. Massive amounts of charm and humor infect every page of Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians. Alcatraz...umm...Sanderson's wit is infectious and joyful, the more you read of the novel, the happier you get. It makes you feel young again, like eating an ice cream cone on a hot day. Sanderson captures Alcatraz's voice wonderfully, creating a character whose rebelliousness, adventurous spirit and humor should greatly appeal to teen readers. All of the characters display a great rapport with each other, and the banter is funny, fresh, odd, and exciting. No matter the novel, Sanderson always seems to create cool magic schemes for his worlds. The ocular lens magic-and to a lesser extent, the Smedry talents-in Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians continues his winning streak with another Blackjack. The magic is less complex than in his adult novels, but the creativity behind the different kinds of lens, as well as the various Smedry talents, Alcatraz encounters is outstanding. The Smedry talents really stand out; they're odd, and at first blush, they seemingly suck. As an example, Grandpa Smedry's talent is that he always arrives late for things. That doesn't look like much of a talent, but Sanderson makes it work in unexpected ways. In ways that actually makes it a rather cool power.
  3. 3. The novel moves faster than a greyhound with his butt on fire, chasing after a fire extinguisher strapped on the back of a cheetah. Fast enough to keep young readers constantly engaged, while the multitude of chapter-ending cliffhangers will make putting this one down difficult. (Having your significant other or trusted family member disorient you with a few sharp whacks from a stick, before prying the book from your hand seems to be the only effective way of stopping.) Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians is a great young adult novel that should have no problem appealing to an adult audience. You don't have to be a kid to enjoy it, because Sanderson's creativity, wit and humor will make even the grumpiest curmudgeon feel like he's twelve again.

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