(This book is a direct sequal to House of M, so if you haven't read that, this will contain spoilers. You have been warned.)
Following the events in House of M, the majority of mutants in the Marvel Universe no longer have any power. Quicksilver, the "perpetrator" of the House of M, is one of them. Formerly the fastest person in the Marvel U, life for him has now slowed to a crawl, and guilt over how the events he set in motion ultimately ended are eating away at him.
After surviving a suicide attempt Quicksilver is taken in by his ex-wife Crystal and her family, the Inhumans. After recovering from his injuries, he steals into the terrigen mists, the source of the Inhumans' powers, to regain his own.
Quicksilver finds that he can move fast again, but something's different. Quicksilver's new powers have to do with moving through time.
Due to his success at regaining some form of power, he steals the terrigen crystals to take to Earth in the hopes of giving the other mutants back their powers as well.
One of the weak points in the story is that Quicksilver is able to pull off some of these feats with the aid of himself from a few days in the future. But when we get a few days into the future we don't see him interact with his past self at all. I know that we're just supposed to "read between the lines" but the way the story is told, and what Quicksilver is up to on those subsequent days, it really feels like he just skipped meeting with his younger self.
There are some good interactions between the characters. The Inhumans, Quicksilver, his daughter Luna, and of course his father Magneto. For almost forty years, Magneto was the villain, and Quicksilver felt somehow responsible for his father's crimes. Now suddenly it is Quicksilver who is the villain, and Magneto is the one pointing out the other's failings.
In the end though, after a story that seems to be building up to something big, it falls flat. The last ten pages or so are confusing and leave the story completely unresolved. I think the problem is that this mini-series is a prelude to Marvel's "Civil War" story arc. So instead of being a complete story, this is just a transitional book. This wouldn't bother me if it was a part of an ongoing series, but this collects a six issue miniseries, and it seems like the point of a miniseries would be to tell a complete story.
I've heard some negative feedback for David Hine's writing. I think this story had a lot of potential, and though I was disappointed with the ending, I don't know how much of that was the writer's fault versus the editors dictating how the story should go in order to set up the next big crossover.
The artwork is mediocre at best. Roy Allan Martinez does mostly outline work, leaving the colorist to handle all the tonal values and shading. (He is, of course, far from alone in this practice). But the colors here are a bit washed out. I don't know if this colorist was trying to look "painterly" or if they just don't understand the concept of shading and value ranges, but every page looks like a washed-out sepia-toned photograph.
Ultimately I would say that if you read House of M, and you're going to read Civil War, and you want to know what happened in the middle, then you'll probably want to get this book. But if you're looking for a great stand-alone story, this isn't it.