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Rex Mundi Libro Uno: El guardián del Templo (Rex Mundi #1)

3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  386 Ratings  ·  47 Reviews
Rex Mundi is a quest for the Holy Grail told as a murder mystery. It is a tale of sin, murder and redemption in an alternate-history Paris where magic is real and the Catholic Church never lost its grip on power. This critically acclaimed volume follows Doctor Julien Sauniere as he investigates the theft of a medieval scroll from a Paris church. He stumbles onto a series o ...more
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Published (first published 2003)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 624)
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Sean Gibson
May 27, 2015 Sean Gibson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting beginning...I just wish the rest of the series lived up to it. It had its moments, but never quite took off the way I hoped it would. Still, not a bad read by any means.
Kylos
May 11, 2009 Kylos rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
wow.
fuck the da vinci code.
church conspiracies and murder mystery set in 1930s paris.
except this 1930s paris is in a world where the church still holds power like they did in the middle ages, the ottomans, prussians and romans still have small empires, the american civil war ended in a stalemate (the Confederate States of America still practice slavery, despite political pressure from the world around them) AND some people practice sorcery.
and somehow alot of the little mysteries and clues are
...more
Angel
This story start in an alternate world where the U.S. Civil War ended in stalemate, and most of the European powers are still colonial powers, Europe is on the verge of war. And did we mention sorcery works and the Catholic Church has a strong grip on society? Yes, all that and more. The story is a quest to uncover the truth about a murder and a stolen scroll, which lead to what appears to be some secret society.

For people who like alternate history stories, they will definitely enjoy this tale
...more
Alger
Dec 12, 2007 Alger rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Da Vinci Code Fans or anyone in the mood for something "sacrelicious"
This series is phenomenal. I will review it as a whole as it encompasses four books and more on the way. It is a well thought out, well researched book that follows in the vein of 'Da Vinci Code', but takes it on a whole new level.
First of all, I feel odd saying "follows in the vein", because it actually was written before the 'Da Vinci Code', but has all the hallmarks of that work: Templar secret societies, Jesus's descendents forming the Merovingian line of Kings, Catholic conspiracy, etc.
...more
Mike
Nov 08, 2014 Mike rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Alternate history with little history, terrible writing, laughable art.
Nick
Rex Mundi is sort of a noir crime alternate history religious suspense story, told in graphic novel form. Yes, that's a lot of genres interwoven, and no, this isn't a quick read. Do NOT skip over the newspaper interludes, which further develop the rich world of the story, as well as containing plot points. In fact, everything in the book contains plot points. Mysterious messages lead to museum paintings which lead to who knows what?
This is a version of the world in which the Catholic Church was
...more
Ryan Haupt
Sep 29, 2011 Ryan Haupt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
Took me forever to read this because the binding fell apart as soon as I bought it. I glued it back together, but not very well, and was so frustrated that I put it in my 'to-read' pile for a few years. Yep, years. So I finally read it, quite liked it, and will be picking up the next. It's alt-history religious-conspiracy noir. What's not to love?
The_Mad_Swede
Jul 04, 2015 The_Mad_Swede rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics, fantasy, horror, 2015
This volume collects issues #0-5 plus the webcomic "Brother Matthew, Blessed Are the Meek" by writer Arvid Nelson and artist Eric J, and starts the Rex Mundi series, which I have incidentally been interested in reading for some time now.

The basic premise is that a theft and a murder sets off a noir story set in an alternative historical France in the 1930s, where the Catholic Church is still big, Guilds are central, France remains a monarchy, the Civil War in America led to a stalemate resulting
...more
Kristopher
May 07, 2009 Kristopher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
My friend suggested this book and promised I'd love it. Turns out he was right. (He's known me for 15 years, so he knows me pretty well.)

Set in an alternate world where the Inquisition is still going on, Rex Mundi mixes sorcery and gothic touches with a good solid murder mystery.
Don
Mar 19, 2010 Don rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this series when the monthly comics came out, but I fell behind about halfway through the series. I decided to finish the series, starting from the beginning. I thought this was the best comic series being published at the time. Reading it a second time, the book is even better.
Albert
Aug 11, 2014 Albert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
I enjoyed this first volume of religious-conspiracy noir.

Story keeps moving at a nice pace of action and intrigue. I can use a little more character development time, but I assume there will be more of that in the next volumes. I find the world building to be interesting, as I always do (part of the reason why I enjoyed Rucka's LAZARUS).

Art is not to my liking, but I think it still does the job for the type of story. I would prefer someone along the line of Alex Maleev, Sean Phillips (obvious
...more
East Bay J
Jun 04, 2008 East Bay J rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
I’d been wanting to read Rex Mundi for some time and was pretty stoked when my friend, Erik, loaned it to me. I kept seeing this one compared to The Da Vinci Code, which I have no intention of reading based on all the negative reviews I’ve read. That sort of turned me off but, considering I’ve had to pay nothing to check out Rex Mundi, why not?

It’s good. I think so, anyway. I think the writing is quite good and the concept as a whole is pretty ambitious. Dr. Julien Sauniere is a sympathetic char
...more
Shane
I'd actually give this 1.5 stars if I could because I liked the one shot at the end. I was pretty excited about this but it turned out that it just didn't do anything for me. 75% of the frames didn't have any words but then in between chapters there were these "newspapers" that I came to dread. The art was nice but the style of straight on face shots was repeated so much that it became annoying.

The writing for the newspaper articles seemed to slip into modern verbiage a lot. I'm not sure if the
...more
Tiamatty
Just finished. Pretty good. The mystery's intriguing. Some nice wheels-within-wheels stuff going on. The protagonist felt a bit flat, though. It makes it a bit tougher to really invest in what's going on. The art was nice. It's a pretty art style. It's a good book, and if you like mystery stories, it's definitely worth checking it out.
Vojtěch
Jan 24, 2015 Vojtěch rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Šifra mistra Leonarda tak trochu jinak. Začátek může být pro některé trochu nudný a natahovaný, ale na druhou stranu to má pořádně hustou atmosféru a konec slibující něco většího.
Susanne Waller
Oct 23, 2015 Susanne Waller rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I first saw this book at Chamblin's and passed it by. Then I bought it and sort of circled it for awhile. When I picked it up and started I could not stop devouring it - and the whole series until it was done. Then I was sad it was over.
Arvid Nelson has done something unusual: written a series so unique, it has no precedents, taking place on a pre-WWII or alternate Earth where the Inquisition never ended and the balances of power are not what we know, he weaves suspense, mystery, a love story an
...more
Ryan Mishap
Feb 17, 2010 Ryan Mishap rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novel
!933, Paris, under the rule of King Louis and the iron fist of The Inquisition, a priest comes to Dr. Saunier's late at night. A parchment has been stolen, can the doctor look into it?

A dark noir tale set against an alternative world where the Prussian, Ottoman, British, and French empire vie for power, and the U.S. civil war was a stalemate producing two countries.

An intriguing start set in an inventive world with eeire parallels to our times. Looking forward to continuing the story.
Kurt
Mar 01, 2011 Kurt rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nice work, although the art's a little washed out color-wise and too soft and rounded, too vaguely cartoony for my tastes. The writing's good though, and the concept--what we all come to comics for--is great: alt-history Europe ca. the 1930s, with the Inquisition running wild through France while a French surgeon tracks the Holy Grail. France runs up to war with the Holy Roman Empire and perhaps the Ottoman Empire, as well. There's a sorcerers guild. You get the idea.
Ubalstecha
Clever alternate history cloaked in a murder mystery. In a France still ruled by the Burgundians and where the Catholic Church enjoys absolute authority, Doctor Julien Sauniere stumbles across a mystery of disappearing documents and magical, ritual murder.

A very interesting story weaving the Catholic Religion, Victorian era Paris, magic and murder mystery. A cute little, and much lighter, story at the end of the book rounds this volume out nicely. Good read.
Billcorcoran
It's a difficult book to describe. It takes place in an alternate history. Magic is real. There is a shocking secret going back to the origin of Christianity that could destroy the Church. It is a murder mystery, a grail quest, and a political thriller. It didn't blow me away but I like genre mixing books and this book delivered in that regard. This is a review of the entire series not just this book.
Alex Sarll
Yet another investigation into Templar secrets, not rendered any more interesting by being relocated to a rather slipshod alternate timeline where the Bourbon monarch was restored and the Inquisition handles all policework in 1930s France, because these two changes apparently sit coherently together rather than just being a half-arsed wishlist of historical components.
Muireann
Apparently I already read this back in 2013! No recollection. Which, for a murder mystery in an alternate 1930s Paris where Holy Blood Holy Grail is real and the Inquisition is still going strong is not such a good sign. I'd give it an extra star now, obviously mellowing in my old age. But then dock it again for all the misspellings and terrible hyphenations.
Taylor
Mar 17, 2008 Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novels
I'm a sucker for anything that involves the Knights Templar [with the exception of The Da Vinci Code]. I like the intersection of film noir, alternative history and Catholic conspiracy but I felt that when all of the issues are collected into a volume the newspaper pieces broke up the story flow too much. Anyways, I'm really intersted to see where this is going.
Magnus Criwall
Sep 03, 2012 Magnus Criwall rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Da vinci code done right. A lot more interesting mystery and without the worst Mary Sue in recent history of the written word. The penciling is what drags this down a little, the art is sloopy and goes from decent to bad between panels on the same page. The fact that wizardy exist does work in the context of the story and does not feel out of place.
Matt Buchholz
Aug 25, 2010 Matt Buchholz rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: religious conspiracy buffs
Shelves: comics-read
This must be what reading Dan Brown feels like, which is to say mildly more satisfying than sitting on a plane and not reading anything. If this had taken the time it usually takes to read a big boy book, I'd be mad but it came with pictures and gave me a reason to not watch some basketball movie starring Common & Queen Latifah so why the fuck not?
Emily
Dec 31, 2009 Emily rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comic-gn-manga
No compelling need to pick up the next one in this series, but I did really like the story printed at the end. It was originally a webcomic, then printed in this special Vol 1 edition about a priest who solves a murder at a circus; it reminded me a lot of the Cadfael TV series in which a cleric in the 12th century solves murders.
Felix
Jun 17, 2010 Felix rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
A fascinating and capturing reading experience for all those inclined towards occult/horror mysteries in the vein of urban gothic tales. I'm hooked and will read the second installment. The artwork is a treat for any lover of the 19th-century Gothic and Decadence.
David Schwan
Feb 04, 2012 David Schwan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great story, an alternate world politics. The Inquisition rules over daily life in France kind of like the Mafia. Dr. Saliniere seems the only person not caught in in some political struggle and is the story's unlikely hero. Great graphics!
Steve Torres-roman
If you're interested in what The Da Vinci Code could and should have been, then definitely give this limited series a try. The mock newspaper articles spice the work with a flavor for the larger alternate world's history and culture.
Dragana
Mar 22, 2009 Dragana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A graphic novel that explores the mystery of the Holy Grail in an alternate universe. Fun speculations, and complex characters. I like the sidetrack into Brother Matthew stories and how he intersects with the series eventually.
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Arvid Nelson is an American comic book writer, best known for the Rex Mundi series.
More about Arvid Nelson...

Other Books in the Series

Rex Mundi (6 books)
  • Rex Mundi, Vol. 2: The River Underground
  • Rex Mundi, Vol. 3: The Lost Kings
  • Rex Mundi, Vol. 4: Crown and Sword
  • Rex Mundi, Vol. 5: The Valley at the End of the World
  • Rex Mundi, Vol. 6: Gate of God

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