Jace's Reviews > Queen and Country, Vol. 1: Broken Ground

Queen and Country, Vol. 1 by Greg Rucka
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M 50x66
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Apr 12, 2008

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bookshelves: comics
Recommended to Jace by: Free Comic Book Day
Read in March, 2008

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 explores the resulting consequences of her actions. For a story that deals with secret agents and international espionage, this book is refreshingly free of hokey spy conventions and cheesy Bond-esque antics [tuxedos, laser-watches, mustachioed villians, death-defying escapes from a nuclear reactor while an auto-destruct sequence counts down over the intercom, etc.] Instead, QUEEN & COUNTRY is surprisingly raw, honest, and playful, but never pretentious. For a comic book, it's a pretty "serious" look at how "real" secret agents might function.

The art is a nice complement to the story, but it's nothing exceptional. It's pretty standard black & white line ink drawing, but I like it. Characters look quasi-realistic, with a cartoony roundness about them. Where the art really shines is the cinematic framing and layout. The illustrations also do a grand job of moving the story along in panels and pages without the use of dialogue.

QUEEN & COUNTRY is a perfect book for someone who wants action and intrigue without the costumed superheroes. Plus, Volume 1 is a pretty quick read, so there's no reason not to check it out.




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