A little girl disguised as a monster. Don’t tell me you’re afraid.
By Noelle Stevenson
Nimona is an impulsive young shapeshifter with a knack for villainy. Lord Ballister Blackheart is a villain with a vendetta. As sidekick and supervillain, Nimona and Lord Blackheart are about to wreak some serious havoc. Their mission: prove to the kingdom that Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin and his buddies at the Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics aren’t the heroes everyone thinks they are.
Holy smokes, what a fun adventure!
Nimona, which was originally a web comic, was published in its entirety last year to wide acclaim. Really. It was an Eisner nominee as well as a long-listed item for the National Book Award.
Don’t let the fancy award designations fool you into thinking this is some heavy, philosophical work though. I mean, sure, there is some moralizing to it, but this is a graphic novel full of fantasy, science, adventure, and loads of humor and snark.
The gist of the story is that the titular shapeshifter teams up with a supervillain to actually, sort of, do good? The dynamic between Nimona and Blackheart is wonderful, the Institution is just the right amount of shady and horrible, and the Goldenloin/Blackheart backstory simply screams for more fleshing out.
The illustrations are beautiful and crisp, with tons of color and flash to them that accentuate the magic of the story itself. Stevenson does a wonderful job creating a story with the perfect balance of comedy, adventure, and drama, and I was delighted with every twist and turn of the narrative.
Should You Read This?
Yes. Yes you should. Even if you don’t like humor, fantasy, or comics- give this a go. (Besides, I fail to believe that such people even exist.) This is the right mix of sweet and silly and serious, and the artwork is a visual joy.
Summary from Goodreads