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Literature / Book of Bantorra

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Tatakau Shisho (translated to "Armed Librarians") is a 2005 series of Japanese light novels about a fantasy world in which people turn into stone tablets called "books" after they die. People can read these books to learn of its history. The Armed Librarians is an organisation of superpowered individuals who collect and guard these books in the Library of Bantorra. The series follows the struggle of the Librarians against its nemesis: the Church of Drowning in Gods Grace.

The series consists out of several story arcs which are all more complex than they initially seem. Additionally, all story arcs are interconnected and culminate into a massive Jigsaw Puzzle Plot.

The 2009 anime adaptation, Tatakau Shisho: The Book of Bantorra, is a 27-episode anime licensed by Sentai Filmworks and is currently streaming on HIDIVE.


Tatakau Shisho provides examples of:

  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: As magical sword blocks any oncoming attacks.
  • Magical Library: All dead souls become books, so the nation's graveyards are basically this.
  • Magic Librarian: Armed Librarians especially.
  • Navel-Deep Neckline: Hamyuts Meseta shirt has a plunging neckline. Irea too, when she was younger.
  • Razor Floss: While not strictly sharp, Hamyuts Meseta can use a telekinetic thread that can cut about the same way a whip can.
  • Scary Librarian: Hamyuts Meseta, including ripping a bomb out of someone's chest with her bare hands and having a power similar to Razor Floss.
  • Seers: At least two, one of whom - Shiron - is so powerful she can see into the future even though she's now a book (possibly centuries later).
  • Shout-Out: Shulamuffen, the demon sword carried by Shiron and by one of the early villains, looks like something from Witchblade.
  • Stripperific: Noloty Malche's outfit qualifies.
    • Yuri, a relatively minor Armed Librarian from episode 16, definitely qualifies after trading her winter coat for a transparent nighty over a Black Bra and Panties.
  • Superpower Lottery: Characters able to absorb the magic rights of the owners of books usually fall straight into this category.
  • The Reveal: In the anime, Hamyuts reveals to Volken that the Church of Drowning in Gods Grace was created by the Armed Librarians, making it look like they're at war with each other.
  • Tyke-Bomb: Several characters both good and bad.
  • Variable-Length Chain Hamyuts Meseta can use a telekinetic thread of variable length.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Ruruta, and sometimes Zatoh depending on whether it's Enlike or the real Zatoh in charge. Curiously, the show plays around with the usual connotations and turns the hair-colour into a plot point.

Alternative Title(s): Book Of Bantorra, Tatakau Shisho