Friday 30 May 2008

Queen and Country

No, I am not talking about the Queen of England. I cannot care less about her. I am talking about the excellent series of graphic novels and books written by Greg Rucka, set in the world of espionnage. The series tells the story of MI6 operative Tara Chace. It's quality stuff. Why is it so good? Well, everything, really. Unlike other espionnage series, it's realistic, unglamorous and down to earth. It is unique in the genre, as it manages to be both believable and fascinating. The characters deal with what real spies deal with: terrorists, Russian maffias and kleptocracies, but also a heavy bureaucracy, politicians with their own agenda and conflictual relationships between different intelligence services (one of the most interesting aspect of the series). Rucka is wonderful as inventing genuine characters, mixing their everyday life with the unique environment they work in. For an American, he is also very good as describing England (and, through the MI6/CIA reports, the love-hate relationship Brits have with Americans), even though sometimes American terms and expression oddly show up in the vocabulary of British characters. I have been reading the series since 2003 and it's utterly addictive. I bought the second volume of the Declassified series yesterday in London. I might start reading it tonight. I would seriously recomment that you get your hand on the first volume and start reading it. You'll get hooked.

No comments: