I really enjoyed this. Brubaker certainly understands the character and feel of Caps world. I couldn't put this book down, and lets be honest, it's a fairly weighty tome (much to my delight). SPOILER ALERT!!!! I know some people may not like the idea that Steve Rodgers doesn't actually feature much in this, but I found the development of Bucky's character very well handled and just as engaging as Rodgers. Brubaker creates a totally different flavoured Captain America which still manages to feel 100% Captain America if that makes any sense.
As for the plot. When I read this along with the Winter Soldier and Red Menace (as already mentioned by other reviewers, read those first!) it really hit me how small the scope feels for a lot of other comic book heroes compared to Cap and the world he inhabits. It's not all "Oh look, Evil maniac wants to destroy our costumed hero for what ever reason with yet another crack pot plan which hero must foil while rescuing girlfriend on route."
Caps world is far bigger than this. State corruption, political fall out from the cold war and a cast full of Machiavellian characters manipulating things for their own agendas, often not realising that they themselves are being manipulated via the Red Skull's multitude of schemes and plans within plans. Skull certainly is a villain you have to take seriously. Destroy our hero? Nothing as small thinking as this for the Red Skull. Destroying the U.S economy, creating unparalleled social divides and gaining full control of the country's political system while even having the nerve to use Caps legacy as a tool to aid his plans. This is a real villain, make no mistake.
i dont read alot of captin america but in order to understand this comic you would have to start at Civil war, then Winter solider, red menace then this book to fully understand it. but still a really good read.