The third book in an ongoing series, The Knights of Crystallia is a funny, lighthearted book, and very over-the-top. The story is about a boy named Alcatraz Smedry who discovered that he and his family have distinct noble powers over glass, and use items called ‘lenses’ to focus them. They are currently battling against the evil organization of Librarians, who seek to control the world. This time around, he has to take a new stance; he must stop them from signing an alliance with the kingdom of Nalhalla while also protecting the Royal Archive (not a library) from the evil librarians.
“Alcatraz” is obviously a comedic story that isn’t meant to be ready completely seriously; this is clear after reading only several pages. However, Brandon Sanderson is very clever, witty, and funny and addictive. One thing that seems to stand out is that the story seems to be told as if Alcatraz is reminiscing about his adventures in the future. He even adds that a certain event will occur in Book 6. He also opens every chapter with a funny, unrelated narrative spoken as if you were conversing with Sanderson himself. One of these, for example, talks about fish sticks. In another, he notes that breaks between chapters are very useful for doing things like going to the bathroom. Things like that make the book very entertaining. Here is a short example:
"I glanced to the side, then jumped as I saw an enormous reptile crawling along the sides of the buildings towards us. Like a spider crawling across the front of a fence.
"Dragon!" I yelled, pointing.
"Brilliant observation, Smedry," Bastille noted besides me.
I was too alarmed to make an amazing comeback. Fortunately, I'm the author of this book, so I can rewrite history as I feel necessary. Let's try that again.
I glanced to the side, whereupon I noticed a dangerous scaly lizard slithering its way along the sides of the buildings, obviously bent on devouring us all.
"Behold!" I bellowed. " 'Tis a foul beast of the netherhells. Stand behind me and I shall slay it!"
"Oh, Alcatraz," Bastille breathed. "Thou art awesomeish and manlyish"
"Lo, let it be such," I said."
I would definitely recommend this book for anyone between the ages of 9 and 13, because it is very fun and enjoyable and the author is clever and witty. I highly recommend reading the previous books before, because it can get confusing in the beginning.
~ Shantanu, Teen Book Reviewer