Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Review: Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener's Bones

Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener's Bones
Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener's Bones by Brandon Sanderson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



This is the second in Brandon Sanderson's Alcatraz books, a YA series he supposedly writes for fun. As there are a lot of writing in-jokes, self-deprecating asides, and puns galore, I have no reason to doubt how much fun Sanderson has writing these books.

In this book, the title character rides a crystal dragon, gets lost to find his way to the Library of Alexandria, writes a story about a bunny who inspires a pig to change his name to Hambo, and begins to accept the heroic role everyone seems to expect of him.

I'm not sure how enjoyable this series would be for kids, because the jokes I love most are the ones that seem to be a direct response to some college literature courses I've taken. The puns are pretty clever (if one likes puns, anyway), but a lot of the literary jokes seem like they'd be over a preteen's head. I suppose there's plenty of silliness to occupy them, though, and then they can reread the book when they're older to appreciate the rest.

The YA I appreciate most, by the way, is the kind that can be enjoyed on several levels. I'm just not sure if this qualifies, because I don't know enough 11-year-olds to ask if they liked it.



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