Genre: Spy Fiction
Publication Date: 2004
From the publisher:
When an unthinkable act of terror devastates London, nothing will stop Tara Chace from hunting down those responsible. Her job is simple: stop the terrorists before they strike a second time. To succeed, she’ll do anything and everything it takes. She’ll have to kill again.
Only this time the personal stakes will be higher than ever before. For the terrorist counterstrike will require that Tara allow herself to be used as bait by the government she serves. This time she’s turning her very life into a weapon that can be used only once. But as she and her former mentor race toward destiny at a remote terrorist training camp in Saudi Arabia, Tara begins to question just who’s pulling the trigger—and who’s the real enemy. In this new kind of war, betrayal can take any form…including one’s duty to queen and country.
I have been thoroughly enjoying Rucka’s comic series Queen & Country. I have often said that fans of Homeland or 24 are predisposed to enjoy the series. For those of you who don’t enjoy comics, Greg Rucka has published three novels featuring the characters from the Queen & Country comics.
From the hall, it looked as nondescript as any other in the building. Inside the outer office, it had desks for not one but three personal assistants. But once one went through and into the inner office, everything changed, as if all pretension to modernity had been rejected in favor of those good old days when spying was deemed a Gentleman’s Game.
This is the first of those novels and it’s pretty good spy fiction. The thing that makes this a little different than the average spy story is that the main character is a woman. She’s a mess. She’s got enough issues to be a full year’s subscription but you still end up rooting for her.
This one is part action adventure and part an exploration of the ugly side of the espionage business. Rucka intersperses the politics behind the missions with the actual action. The story is one that’s still rather contemporary even though the book was written twelve years ago.
This is a book that easily works as a standalone if you aren’t interested in the comic series. I like that Rucka has used both formats in the series and I’m looking forward to continuing the story with the next collected edition of the comics.