The Roach by Rhett C Bruno is an unusually grumpy novel from the point of view of a forcefully retired vigilante. Reese, the very much anti-hero main character reminded me of that Grumpy old man show where what they do the whole time is complaining about human nature, how horrible it all is… and at the same time there is humour in his lines and he can’t help but hope against all odds that he is wrong about people.
Admittedly, he has a terrible life, had a terrible life and has nothing to look forward to. This doesn’t make it easy to look on the bright side of things. The only brightness is Laura, the last woman he saved, keeps coming back to look after him, and the one he got shot in the spine for saving. But being stripped from his vigilante role because he is not physically capable of standing anymore leaves him with nothing. Being a roach was his very identity. Except of course things don’t stay still. And life still has a lot of things it still wants him to sacrifice so as to keep the people around him safe.
This is not the typical superhero book, this isn’t even the typical overcoming difficulties book either, this is something else. I wouldn’t call it fun – just like Sin City is not fun. But if you want some dark humour, some disillusioning and reillusioning (yes I made up that word), this is the book for you.
Reese has attitude, is very grouchy, is un-killable, has dark thoughts swirling in his head all the time, is probably crazy, but he is so full of good intentions at the bottom of it all.