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Queen and Country, Vol. 1: Broken Ground (Queen and Country #1)

3.97  ·  Rating Details  ·  951 Ratings  ·  57 Reviews
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? T ...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published April 28th 2002 by Oni Press (first published April 15th 2002)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,487)
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Nicolo Yu
Aug 26, 2014 Nicolo Yu rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sdcc-2014
This is an early Greg Rucka story and already it is very good. All of the Rucka's signature stylings are already present: the strong female character, the determined violence and a fully developed cast to support British intelligence operative Tara Chace.

If this book has one weakness it is the art. The faces are oft-putting almost too cartoony for the serious subject matter.

This collection has a neat bonus, an interlude story with art by Stan Sakai. Anytime Sakai draws characters other than his
This graphic novel had a good spy intelligence agency theme to it -- no superheroes here -- and a protagonist in Tara Chace that was strong, mysterious, and made me curious to know more about her. That being said, I found the black and white artwork to be two-dimensional, cartoonish, and dull. It really didn't fit the storytelling style and made the comic fall flat for me. Here is an example of the artwork, my apologies if you fall asleep looking at it. description
Quentin Wallace
Dec 21, 2015 Quentin Wallace rated it really liked it
Very good stuff here. This is "real world" black ops material that was rarely, if ever, seen in comics before his series was released. The main character is Tara Chace, a member of British S.I.S. (think CIA, but not exactly.)

In this volume, Tara does a "favor" for the CIA by assassinating a rogue Russian General. However, the Generals men find out about her, and she ends up with a million dollar bounty on her head. And it gets more complicated from there...

The art is a little cartoony, but much
This was well-written spy book, with good dialog, although very much setup arc for a series that I'm hoping fulfills its promise. I'm not a huge fan of the art, not because I mind black and white (I actually really enjoy B&W art), but because of the thick-line art style, and the fact that it didn't add much to the storytelling for me. It could just be that I prefer a "grittier" art style, especially with stories about the shades of gray involved in spy work. I will say, though, that the visu ...more
Mar 24, 2011 Stephanie rated it really liked it
Recommended to Stephanie by: Matt Smith
Good spy story with interesting characters and relationships. This volume was very much a set up for more and I'm inspired to keep reading the series. (Plus, I easily went through it in one night's reading.) I liked the cartoony, black and white artwork--it makes the action and blood easier for me to consume. And it is so different from other stuff I've seen as far as presenting a sexy heroine and guys in suits.
Mar 27, 2014 Ashish rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, spy
It's excellent. I've always seen when a comic is black & white, with a afairly straightforward art style, the focus is on the story and the characters... and this does not disappoint. It's not over the top, splashy, ridiculous, or simplistic. Instead, it's everything that La Femme Nikita was not, while retaining that core premise rendered in shades of grey, moral ambiguities, flawed people, and a kickass gritty violence far more effective than anything with explosions and gunfire - it's the ...more
Dec 02, 2011 Lisa rated it really liked it
Good stuff. Mature, fast paced storyline. I wonder why Rucka likes to make his strong women characters such heavy drinkers? Just asking.
Feb 20, 2011 Cait rated it liked it
This reads a lot like SPOOKS THE COMIC BOOK. So, clearly, I loved it. Also: episodic comics are perfect study-break reading.
Jimmy Brown
Jan 17, 2015 Jimmy Brown rated it liked it
I am a sucker for a story with a strong female protagonist and I kind of get that here. Although Tara is certainly strong and she is the focus of the story, so much of this book features other people talking about her situation. I will reserve judgement in her as a character till I read more. I am unsure about the art here, on the one hand, it is good that it is not flashy but on the other, it is kind of dull and weirdly cartoonist at times. The art tends to betray the script and its swearing an ...more
Bryson Kopf
Aug 31, 2011 Bryson Kopf rated it it was amazing
This is a series I've meant to get to for a very long time, and it did not disappoint. Rucka has a gritty and authentic-feeling take on the spy genre, pairing strong character work with a riveting plot. The series follows the tough team of 'Minders' a group within Britain's S.I.S. organization who generally have to do a lot of dirty work on behalf of the crown. The book opens with an exciting assassination of an arms dealer, an act whose repercussions, will affect the entire team, particularly t ...more
Jan 13, 2013 Tiara rated it liked it
As much as I love Greg Rucka, I'm not entirely sure that this series is for me. I never found myself sucked into the story, and while the art was good, it felt a little too cartoonish at times for some of the scenes.

I think the most fascinating part of the story for me was the moments we saw Tara in her apartment where it seems to be hinted at that she's a heavy drinker. In fact, Tara is fascinating. So many of the panels seemed to show her as tired and resigned to her fate. She doesn't questio
I picked up this first collection of Greg Rucka's Queen & Country after hearing Jennifer K. Stuller (whose Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology I have previously reviewed) talk about it at WonderCon, back in 2011. The note I made about it at the time was "female badass alcoholic train wreck secret ops" -- that may end up being an oversimplification, but it's not wrong.

Tara Chace (who I keep wanting to call Kara Thrace) is a Special Operations Officer,
Noah Soudrette
Nov 21, 2007 Noah Soudrette rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Rucka fans, spy fans, 70's British TV fans
While I was seriously enjoying Greg Rucka's Whiteout, I was drawn to the character of Lilly Sharpe. Sharpe is a smart, beautiful, witty, and caring individual, and as you might know from my previous review, makes one heck of a romantic pairing with Carrie Stetko. I was towards the end of Whiteout when I remembered that Rucka also had a series out called Queen & Country. I also remembered, from the covers, that its lead was a blond British agent. I quickly ordered the first graphic novel in ...more
Todd Nemet
Mar 27, 2012 Todd Nemet rated it it was amazing
Borrowed this after a dinner party. I usually don't like dinner parties or borrowing books, but almost half of their bookshelf contained graphic novels, including Therefore, Repent, which is one of my favorites. So I figure there is no harm.

About six months later I sat down and read it.

The main character is Tara Chace, who is some kind of secret British spy called a "minder." There are two other minders, and they go on missions that usually involve killing people.

Tara drinks a lot and appears to
Aug 20, 2007 Falkor rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of espionage thrillers, people looking for a good female protagonist
Tara Chace is a "minder" in Britain's Special Intelligence Service--their term for special agents sent on Her Majesty's most secret, most dangerous missions, where people are all but guaranteed to be killed. Sometimes killing people is the point of the mission, as it is when Tara goes to Kosovo to assassinate a big wig in the Russian mafia who's been causing too much trouble for Western power brokers working in the already turbulent Balkans. She succeeds, but the Mafioso's associates vow revenge ...more
Apr 12, 2008 Jace rated it liked it
Recommended to Jace by: Free Comic Book Day
Shelves: comics
My initial encounter with QUEEN & COUNTRY came a couple years ago when I got a copy of the first issue on "Free Comic Book Day". I really liked the story and wanted to read more, but it wasn't until recently that I managed to get my hands on a copy of Volume 1, which collects issues 1-4.

QUEEN & COUNTRY centers around the adventures of Tara Chace, a covert operative in the employ of the British government. This first volume features her assasination attempt on a Russian gun-runner and exp
Althea J.
Aug 16, 2014 Althea J. rated it it was ok
Shelves: comics
This is not my cup of tea. It's written by Greg Rucka so I wanted to give it a shot but it's just not my thing.

The beginning was great, when you're out in the field with the main character, Tara Chace. That was exciting and the simple black and white design served it well. The rest of the story was a lot of the boss butting heads with the administration of the spy agency and I found all of that internal politicking pretty boring.

It's also possible that my expectations were way too high because
James Eckman
Jul 07, 2014 James Eckman rated it it was ok
Adequate plot, the artwork was really variable, some excellent chapter breaks but the story art was mostly mediocre. I noticed most of the later volumes don't use Steve Ralston but glancing through "Queen and Country: The Definitive Edition, Vol. 2" the art problem still exists. It may have been a stylistic choice, but it really turns me off.
Gayle Francis Moffet
May 07, 2015 Gayle Francis Moffet rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, 2015, may-2015
A strong thriller with a female spy after my own heart and a great ensemble cast. Everyone gets a moment or two to shine, and it makes me excited for what comes next. Luckily, there's plenty to check out.

A bit thrown off by the somewhat soft art on such a hard book, but that's likely due to maybe a little too much Sean Phillips in my spy diet. :)
Queen & Country is Greg Rucka's ongoing comic series following a British MI6 agent named Tara Chace. It's spies and clandestine operations, intelligence and bureaucracy. In this story, Tara is on a mission to recover something from an informant who's disappeared in pre-9/11 Afghanistan. The chilling spy procedural is rife with loads of tradecraft (how do you spot a dead drop in a place you've never been?). It's fun for intel freaks. My big complaint about this series is that Rucka writes mos ...more
Dave Versace
Dec 19, 2014 Dave Versace rated it it was amazing
Outstanding spy drama in the vein of Smiley's People and The Sandbaggers. The violence of the action scenes pale in comparison to the ruthless political intrigue going on behind the scenes.
Edward Rathke
Jun 11, 2015 Edward Rathke rated it did not like it
I don't know why I thought a book about spies would interest me so maybe giving me it a one is unfair, but I don't care.
I hate this kind of jingoistic bullshit.
Annie Sem
Jan 21, 2016 Annie Sem rated it really liked it
An interesting take on the spy game from the British perspective.
Emily D
Sep 04, 2014 Emily D rated it really liked it
Screw James Bond, Tara is so much better.
Oct 28, 2015 Tammy rated it really liked it
An adult graphic novel that places the reader inside a special section of British Ministry of Intelligence. Tara Chace is the main character you follow but the reader is also with the leaders of her division. She is a special agent called in to clean up a mess or sometimes create a new one. Morals and the greater good are defined by governmental goals and trading with other countries rather than asking is killing right or wrong. Now she has to deal with the consequences of her assignments in a v ...more
Artemiy Nizovtsev
Dec 24, 2015 Artemiy Nizovtsev rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, oni-press
Although I'm not entirely sure I understood everything that was going on in this volume, as I am not that good in the whole politics and secret agencies stuff, I still enjoyed this book a lot, because it is just so well written. Rucka is a master of writing this kind of stories, and Queen and Country is no exception. I also liked the art, even though I can see how it can be off-putting to some people. I do not have any problems with black & white and with the drawing style, though. I think i ...more
Nov 12, 2014 Andrew rated it it was ok
I really wanted to like this - it has espionage and is written by Greg Rucka. I liked his Wonder Woman graphic novels and Batwoman: Elegy and thought I'd enjoy this too.

But I'm just not a fan of black and white comics. The art is ok, but didn't really catch my attention. The story is decent, but not great. I flew through this and wasn't all that satisfied. Oh well.
Oct 18, 2010 Rob rated it really liked it
Phenomenal series by the one and only Greg Rucka. Following Tara Chace, an agent for the S.I.S (MI-6), Queen & Country is a brilliant piece of spy fiction, more "real-world" than your typical spy schlock like Bourne or Bond. This series is a real page turner, and keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time. In fact, you may want to just pick up the whole series when you decide to read this. You'll be REALLY glad when you have the next book(s) on hand!
Jan 18, 2016 Jeffrey rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, government
I really enjoyed all three stories in this volume. I also really enjoyed the changing artists and artwork, right up until the third story. All of a sudden, the artwork for the third mission became some superhero comic, hyper-sexualized bullshit. It did not lend itself well to the story and negated the relatively simple artwork of the first two stories. It was aggravating and unnecessary and I hope that it doesn't continue in the next volume.
sweet pea
Jul 14, 2008 sweet pea rated it it was ok
Shelves: graphic-content
this series shows the inner workings of a british intelligence unit. heavy on bureaucracy and bucking (and sometimes following) protocol. a deadly female protagonist? i should love this book. i don't. although the portrayal of operations is probably truer than any other espionage series out there, i don't want to read about it. i no like bureaucracy. the illustrations are cartoony, but suitable. sometimes detailed, sometimes sparse.
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Greg Rucka, is an American comic book writer and novelist, known for his work on such comics as Action Comics, Batwoman: Detective Comics, and the miniseries Superman: World of New Krypton for DC Comics, and for novels such as his Queen & Country series.
More about Greg Rucka...

Other Books in the Series

Queen and Country (8 books)
  • Queen and Country, Vol. 2: Morning Star
  • Queen and Country, Vol. 3: Crystal Ball
  • Queen and Country, Vol. 4: Operation Blackwall
  • Queen and Country, Vol. 5: Operation Stormfront
  • Queen and Country, Vol. 6: Operation: Dandelion
  • Queen and Country, Vol. 7: Operation: Saddlebag
  • Queen and Country, Vol. 8: Operation: Red Panda

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