Rex Libris: I, Librarian

~by James Turner

Rex Libris is the story of, well, Rex Libris. Head Librarian of the Middleton Public Library, he has approached B. Barry Horst to sell his autobiography to be published as a comic book. And, although Rex's life is pretty exciting already, Barry can't help but trying to add some embellishments. Thoth, the library's administrator and Egyptian deity, isn't completely convinced this is a good idea. And anyway, Rex has work to do.

Rather traumatized by the burning of the library in Alexandria and the death of his beloved Hypatia, Rex has devoted his life to protecting knowledge, books, and the venerable institutions known as libraries. He is not the only one, all librarians are members of a secret international society known as the Ordo Bibliotheca. Undergoing intense training, these librarians are prepared to defend civilization and humanity by any means necessary.

I, Librarian collects issues one through five of this delightful comic series. In it, Rex must complete a dangerous mission to retrieve the Principia Mathematica after the Supreme Warlord Vaglox of planet Benzine V refuses to return it, even after being warned it is overdue. In the meantime, his fellow librarians Hypatia (no, not his long lost love) and Circe (yes, the Circe) only have to deal with missing cookies for the children's reading. Oh, and defending the library from marauding Vandals.

The artwork is very distinctive. I wasn't sure I liked it at first, but it grew on me by the end. Rex's somewhat inconsistent accent bothered me throughout, but I can forgive that small flaw fairly easily. Unfortunately, the comic was a little text heavy at times. But, it was quite amusing and certainly made me smile. James Turner knows his librarians. I very much enjoyed my first taste of Rex Libris and definitely look forward to future installments.