Book Review: The Librarians and the Lost Lamp by Greg Cox
Genre: Action/Adventure, Fantasy
Series: The Librarians
Publisher: Tor Books (October 11, 2016)
Author Info: www.gregcox-author.com
With thanks to the publisher for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Disclaimer! I am not a librarian and had not seen the television series prior to reading this book, but now that I have read it, I’m going to remedy at least one of these things!
Flynn Carsen used to be the one and only Librarian in a long line of those tasked with protecting the world from the magic hidden within the pages of our favourite books. Ten years ago, he went up against the villainous Forty Thieves to stop them from accessing the powers of Aladdin’s Lamp. A decade later, Carsen is no longer alone in his duties, as he is joined by a new generation of Librarians, and their Guardian, who must once again save the world from the Forty and a djinn who’d really like to bust out of his cage…
I had not even heard of this series before (thanks a lot, Canadian television) prior to receiving this book, so I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, but Cox quickly sets the tone with the introduction of Carsen, the quirky and charming Librarian who gallivants around the world in a tweed suit. He doesn’t exactly sound formidable, especially considering what he’s up against, and as the story progresses, we see that his skills are mostly limited to his vast knowledge of books. But we’ve all known how surprisingly cool librarians can really be and what they bring to the adventure table, after Evie made her proclamation and proved her worth in The Mummy.
Flip to the future, where the new group of Librarians bring some other interesting skills to their role, with characters that don’t fit the typical mould of either the librarian, or art historian, mathematician, or world class thief, as well as the former military officer who protects them. But of course they work together well enough to save the day and offer a lot of fun for the reader while doing so.
While I was expecting magic and fantasy to feature prominently in the story, what with Exaclibur showing up early on, I was extremely pleased with the inclusion of historical events and geographical details, many of which are very much relevant now. In particular, when Carsen’s adventure takes him to Baghdad, there is ample time spent on the city’s rich cultural history in juxtaposition with the destruction that has been wrought by war.
Like I said, I’m no librarian myself, but I’d like to think that actual librarians would appreciate the fun–which is why I’ve now suggested the series to my librarian friends and will definitely be checking it out myself.