There are very few comics about libraries and librarians.
Unshelved has found its niche, and rules it well.
For me, the comic works well because of nostalgia – I remember my days working as a page in a public library, and Unshelved captures a lot of the little truths about such a place.
Even though I haven’t worked at such a job in over 5 years, I am still currently an avid reader. My reading has changed – it is much harder to enjoy the pulp fantasy books I used to love, but every once in a while I discover something amazing, and they capture perfectly exactly what that experience entails.
So Unshelved works well for me, because I can relate.
I’ve been there, I still am there in many ways, and I can recognize it all as true.
The comic has a lot more going for it than that, of course. There is plenty of clever gaming jokes and dorky references, along with more ordinary humor, from the surreal to the slapstick. It has solid storylines, a nice cast, and even the occasional romantic tension. I’d wager a lot of folks out there could easily enjoy it without needing any background in library logic.
And for those of us who enjoy the world of books? There are a lot of nice touches that strike very close to home, and thats a good thing.