“Batwoman: Elegy” by Greg Rucka

After the dust settled in the Batman universe last year, I bade farewell to the last superhero titles I was reading. I mostly enjoyed Grant Morrison’s take on Batman et al, but once Batman Incorporated started I lost interest in the reboot.

Then I saw the Batwoman: Elegy graphic novel collection, by Greg Rucka and J. H. Williams III, with an introduction by Rachel Maddow, featuring an ass-kicking redhead. I knew that book was coming home with me. It did not disappoint.

Like her namesake, Batwoman is a vigilante in a mask with a secret identity: Kate Kane, a former West Point cadet. We are soon shown she’s a lesbian (the most prominent gay character in the DC universe), which matters in her personal life. Behind the mask, though, she seeks to confront a new villain coming to town who will be head of Gotham City’s many covens.

The contrasts of personal and private life, painted and penciled art, plus easy-access introduction to a new, compelling character and villain made this a fast, enjoyable read, and a welcome return for me to the DC universe.

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