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Queen and Country #01: Operation: Broken Groundby Greg Rucka and Steve Rolston
"What I can't quite decide about Queen and Country is whether someone who doesn't read comics should give it a try. I can't think of anything in this series that one can't find somewhere else. For comics lovers, Queen and Country is an interesting, entertaining diversion that has a sense of novelty within this medium....I keep wanting Rucka to push the envelope a little, take this intriguing idea and turn it into something you could only find in a comic-book series." Chris Bolton, Powells.com (read the entire Powells.com review)
Synopses & Reviews
The world we live in is a lot darker than most of us care to admit. In the back rooms of embassies, in the poorly lit alleys of the world's capitols, deals are being made and backs are being stabbed so that people in power can grab more of it while climbing over the bodies of the powerless. In this hidden section of our society, there are those who walk the line between the two sides and attempt to keep things from falling too far into shadow, all the while trying not to fall off the line and into the darkness themselves.
Tara Chace is just such a person. As part of the Special Section of Britain's Ministry of Intelligence, she is one of a handful of operatives codenamed "Minders" — the people they call when the politics get particularly dirty. It's a world of questionable morals and so many shades of gray they could have their own rainbow. For instance, is it better to assassinate a general in the Russian mafia, to take his life, rather than allow him to peddle more guns and drugs in underprivileged countries? Tara's bosses seem to think so, and she is dispatched to Kosovo to take him out.
Unfortunately for her, the action forces the Russian mafia to ask their own question — once someone has taken the life of one of their officers, can they continue to let that person live?
Operation: Broken Ground is the first collection of Queen & Country, the acclaimed comic book by noted novelist Greg Rucka (Critical Space) and artist Steve Rolston (Pounded). This book also contains chapter break art by Tim Sale (Daredevil: Yellow) and a special short story illustrated by Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo).
"Rucka has come up with a memorably dysfunctional antiheroine....The action sequences are fast-paced and exciting, but the truly engaging part of the book is how sharply Rucka and Rolston are able to define even minor characters." Publishers Weekly
"As an author, [Rucka] thrives in political, moral, and emotional complexity." Warren Ellis, creator of Transmetropolitan and Ministry of Space, from his Introduction
"Rolston's use of body language and storytelling is incredible...and Rucka's script brings us in and reminds us of how close the book is to reality..." Randy Lander, TheFourthRail.com
"Steve Rolston's pacing is fantastic, drawing out the chase scenes with big, open panels while moving the SIS scenes along at a tense, brisk clip." Gus Dahlberg, savantmag.com
"[T]his tale is a dark-encrusted modern action noir, a taut thriller, if you will, heavy on the espionage and global intrigue." Spence Abbot, IGN for Men
"Rucka's tough, lean writing style is perfectly complimented by Steve Rolston's excellent black and white art." Nick Brownlow, NinthArt.com
"Queen & Country delivers in a big way." Casey Seijas, Wizard Magazine
Queen & Country is a spy comic unlike any other, sidestepping the clichés normally associated with the genre in favor of the sort of dirty dealing that keeps the world turning.
As part of the Special Section of Britain's Ministry of Intelligence, Tara Chace is one of a handful of operatives they call when they need to clean up a mess, or to make a new one. It's a world of questionable morals. For instance, is it better to assassinate a general in the Russian mafia rather than allow him to peddle more guns and drugs in underprivileged countries? Tara's bosses seem to think so. But the Russian mafia ask their own question — once someone has taken the life of one of their officers, can they continue to let that person live? Greg Rucka peels back the lid on the traditional espionage story to see the nastiness inside, and Steve Rolston brings it to life with stunning clarity.
About the Author
Greg Rucka is the award-winning author of both comic books and prose novels. Before entering the world of graphic literature, he had made his mark on the crime genre by writing the highly successful Atticus Kodiak novels — Keeper, Finder, Smoker, and Shooting at Midnight — for Bantam. He made his comic book debut in 1997 with Whiteout, a collaboration with artist Steve Lieber for Oni Press, which was soon followed by a critically acclaimed run on DC's Batman series, Detective Comics, and the Eisner Award-winning Whiteout: Melt. Rucka has since written innumerable comics for various companies and written two comics-related novels, Batman: No Man's Land and Grendel: Past-Prime. He is currently working on an illustrated novel with Japanese artist Yoshitaka Amano for Marvel Comics, is writing the regular Queen & Country series for Oni and Felon for Top Cow, and has the fifth Atticus Kodiak novel, Critical Space, slated for an October 2001 release.
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