Thursday, October 23, 2014

Librarian Lit: Sci-Fi

A couple of the librarians at MPL challenged the rest of us to read “Librarian Fiction”… (books that take place in a library or have a librarian in them.) So, since I read mostly sci-fi and fantasy, I went looking for something that fit the bill… and I ended up with Libriomancer by Jim Hines.

Plot Summary: Books are powerful. People believe in them and that belief allows the objects in books to become real… if there is a libriomancer like Isaac Vainio around. Libriomancers are magicians who can reach into books and pull out the objects found within. But, Isaac got too involved with his magic and has been “retired” for his own good. Then, vampires start hunting libriomancers and other magical creatures and the library Isaac works in is set on fire. Isaac has to come out of retirement to figure out what is going on - starting with who kidnapped Johannes Gutenberg, the most powerful libriomancer around.
Libriomancer is a witty, humorous take on the importance of tales, stories, and books, with a couple of librarian moments thrown in for fun. My favorite scene (the one that still makes me giggle a month later) is when Isaac threatens to take away the library card of a patron.

"Are you aware that section 6.2 of the Copper River Library user agreement gives me the authority to revoke your library card, including Internet Privileges?" 
She lowered her cane. “You wouldn’t dare.”
I leaned closer and whispered, “A librarian’s gotta do what a librarian’s gotta do.”
As a rabid Sci-Fi/Fantasy reader, I also enjoyed the nods to books and authors that the writer slipped in. As Isaac was pulling items out of books, you would get hints as to which books they were coming from. Am I smart enough to figure out the healing potion came from the Lord of the Rings trilogy? Could there possibly have been a book about Martian wood nymph nymphomaniacs? (Yep-the '70s had some really interesting pulp fiction.)

I will mention that my mother read Libriomancer and said, “That book was dumb.” But, I enjoyed it. I thought it was funny and entertaining. To each their own. And, the scene about taking away someone’s library card still makes me giggle.

~Mary P.

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