31 March 2011

Book Review Number 66: Green Arrow: The Sounds of Violence

I am, unapologetically, a Green Arrow fan.  I adore Ollie Queen and am so, so jealous of Black Canary that I would happily trade places with her any day of any week of any month of any year.  Yeah, I've got it bad.  So I pick up anything Green Arrow that I can find.  Lately, I've been picking up the monthlies in the hopes of keeping track of what the Emerald Archer is up to now.  When I was at my local comic shop yesterday, I ran across The Sounds of Violence, one of the Trade Paperbacks that I hadn't read before.  So, without hesitation, it became mine and it was read last night.

The Sounds of Violence takes place after Oliver Queen returns to the land of the living.  Mia, a girl he rescued from the streets, is living with him and he's taken over trying to be a father figure to her.  He's also trying to get to know his own son, Connor, while putting off getting back in touch with Dinah (aka Black Canary).  It's a pretty typical life for the recently-returned-to-life.

But being a super hero comic, and being Green Arrow, it's never that simple.  Mia wants Ollie to train her as the next Speedy, which he is loathe to do because he doesn't want her getting hurt.  When he meets Dinah for dinner, she insists that she doesn't want things to go quickly with them, but a fight with The Riddler changes things.  And, later, causes an argument with an overprotective Hawkman.

And then comes the big problem - a masked villain that goes by the name of Onomatopoeia.  He talks as the name implies (using "sound words" like "snap", "crack", etc, for those unfamiliar with the word) and he's got something against certain heroes.  He takes out Philadelphia's protector, Virago.  Then moves on to Harrisburg's Buckeye, first killing his wife and then the non-powered hero.  The third one he goes after is Green Arrow II - Connor Hawke - while Connor and Ollie are patrolling.

While I didn't enjoy this one quite as much as Quiver (where Ollie IS returned from the grave), I still really enjoyed it.  It was Ollie through and through - from his sexy scenes with Dinah to his overwhelming need to protect his family.  There is a scene where he is holding his arrow on Onomatopoeia to prevent him from finishing off Connor while Connor is being worked on by doctors.  Ollie is drained from having given blood, but for more than 20 minutes, he stands, arrow knocked, until his son is out of danger.  That is one of the things about Ollie that I admire.

The ending was a good one for the book, with Ollie surrounded by his family, but definitely ready for a continuation.  Onomatopoeia is still out there and Star City still has villains to be taken out.  So I'm ready to find the next book, The Archer's Quest (which I may have read before, but it's been awhile).  I just hope I get lucky enough to find it soon.