Tuesday, January 25, 2005

"A Gentleman's Game" (the Queen & Country novel)

Greg Rucka can write. Not just comics, mind. THe man has some genuine, quite outstanding talent for writing a spy story. His style is an interesting one. Very personal, very descriptive, very fast and loose. I'm enjoying A Gentleman's Game far more than I enjoyed Tom Clancy's Op Center novels, or even Rainbow Six (which I thoroughly enjoyed). Rucka has a very descriptive format in his scripts, and it carries over into his prose. Its also very nice to see the dialogue expanded.

But by far, what really amazes me is Rucka's portrayel of Muslim extremists, specifically those dedicated to the idea of jihad. The man's done his research. He knows shit. It's fantastic. He really gets inside the guy's head and, as horrible as what the little shit is doing, he manages to make it sound reasonable. That's the big thing that takes Rucka's writing to a whole other level: his villains are sympathetic. You deplore what they're doing, hope they die, but the villains make sense, and their rhetoric is completly sound to them (like where a suicide bomber's interior monologue is rationlizing the subjugation of women in Pakistan as protecting them and keeping them from being made into sex idols). You want these characters to die, because a realization occurs that this is about the only way they're going to stop, and they DO deserve it.

But none the less, Rucka's work is just outstanding. I am very glad that I bought this book. However, I think you'll probably need to have read at least the first couple story arcs of the comic to really get it. It keeps referencing an op in St. Petersburg which I can only assume is the storyarc that's currently on the way to being the next TPB.


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