Review: Men of Wrath

Men of WrathMen of Wrath by Jason Aaron
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Men of Wrath is a short, but oh so sweet, piece of southern noir that I really fuckin’ dug. Jason Aaron continues to feed my jones for hardboiled crime fiction with this mean little ditty.

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No convoluted story here, just a straight gut-punch of a tale about the men of the Rath family and their legacy of violence passed from father to son with each new generation. Ira Rath’s brimming with the crazy maliciousness that seems to have corrupted all the men of the Rath family tree. He’s the definition of an ice cold sonofa’ bitch. This book narrowly focuses on Ira, the enmity between him and his son, a house fulla’ guns, and a bloody climax that kept me on the edge of my seat right to the end.

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This one is heavy on the cruelty and right to the point. 5 issues and done. Sometimes it should be like that. Plenty of violence and very little mercy to go around. Aaron’s doesn’t seem as long-winded in this one as in some of his other, more well-known books. I’m cool with that. Plus, he’s got Garney ridin’ shotgun with this book. Aaron seems comfortable to allow Ron to do his fair share in tellin’ the tale.

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Ron Garney really impressed me. I’ve been ambivalent towards most of his stuff in the past, but it’s usually of the capes and cowls variety. No web-shootin’ or claw poppin’ here, and he nailed it. Either his style or my tastes have changed, because I also went for the more recent Wolverine stuff he did with Aaron a little ways back. Here’s to hopin’ that these two boys hook up again for another book down the road.

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If you like happy endings, sensitive characters, and lots of profound dialogue look elsewhere. If you’re cool with mean folks, doing horrible things, with lots of bullets and blood, this one’s worth a look-see.

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