Ok, before I get into this review, I have to go ahead and warn you all. This is probably going to be a bit different from any other reviews I've ever posted on this blog before. Mainly because every book I've ever reviewed here before was fun to read, if not at least amusingly unbearable. This book, however, is terrible.
I can generally determine how bad a book was by comparing the time it takes to read it by the amount of pages/dialog in the book. This book has 80 pages and it took me 5 days to finish it. Now, often I can pass off a timespan like that by looking at how busy I was with other things during those times, but I can't do that for this one. I honestly sat and stared at the cover of this book for an hour at one point, trying to convince myself to open it back up and keep reading.
So, I decided to take one for the team and struggle my way through the rest of the book and finally get the warning out to everyone. You guys owe me. Let's get on with the review.
The book opens with the Ayre Force team on a mission to southern china to raid a facility owned by sterotypical evil scientist Janus Winter. This particular facility happens to specialize in bear bile farming. Honestly, I laughed when I read that. But then I looked it up and realized it was a real thing. Apparently they stick a big needle into a bears liver and suck out all the bile to use in some traditional chinese medicine. Generally it is unbelievably painful and unpleasant for the animal, and frequently results in death. OK, well played Mr. Ayre, I can't argue that you are officially not the biggest dick in this comic book. But, after reading the whole book through, I feel like the bears got off easier that the reader.
But anyways, they stop the bad guys, and I'm almost ready to accept that maybe Calvin Ayre isn't the biggest jerk of a protagonist ever. And then he locks them in cages and blows them the fuck up with grenades, after expressing just how much he enjoys doing that.
Now, it may just be me, but I'd love to see where in Mr. Ayre's copy of "Business for Dummies" it recommends depicting yourself as a homocidal vigilante without any remorse for butchering a dozen human beings. But, I'm not going to get myself on that rant just now, because this is where the book actually delivers the one thing you'd probably expect a company that specializes in things dudes like. Explosions and car chases. Really the next 3 pages could be nothing but explosions, and you'd still walk away with the same impression. The dialog is basically just your standard action hero "blowing stuff up is just another day on the job" filler. So, they drive their motorcycles all the way to their big, inconspicuous camouflaged airplane, where they are greeted by none other than Janus Winter's three genetically hybrid children, who have the relative powers of a chameleon, a lion, and a cheetah.
At this point, you will quite likely find yourself wondering what a gun tastes like.
So, fast forward a bit, we find out that apparently Calvin Ayre is really a former secret agent who quit and apparently decided to lay low by starting a multi-billion dollar company and being an egocentric douchebag. We then see shots of Calvin assembling the members of Ayre Force (I did mention that all of the team members are based off of actual employees of Bodog Entertainment, right?). So, in this team-building montage we learn that apparently all the members of Ayre Force were already well-established safe-crackers, data thieves, and eco-terrorists.
Really I'd write more, but there's not much to the rest of the book after we see the team forming. They basically just switch right back to their plot device of "EPIC BATTLE!" for the rest of the book. And in the end, Calvin Ayre douches his way to victory, Janus Winter is dead, and his mutant kids are already planning the sequel.
Fuck. A sequel.