BOOK REVIEW | Nimona — Noelle Stevenson

nimona

READ: September 2015

FORMAT: Paperback

RATING: ★★★★★

The second book I decided to read in my exploration of graphic novels/comics was Nimona by Noelle Stevenson, a book that I’d been trying to resist buying basically since it came out. I actually read the webcomic around the time it first started, but I am honestly awful at keeping up to date with webcomics. I love them, and keep up with them for a time, then completely forget about them for months, go back and reread it all, promise I’ll keep up, and completely forget again. Naturally, I was incredibly excited to read Nimona in its entirety.

Nimona follows its title character, a shapeshifter who offers to be the sidekick for villain Lord Ballister Blackheart. Together, they cause all kinds of mayhem for Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin and the Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics. However, things quickly escalate when it’s revealed that Nimona’s powers are more dangerous and mysterious than Lord Blackheart anticipated.

I really, really liked this when I first read it, and then I couldn’t stop thinking about it and read it all again. I love this story, and I’m so incredibly fond of all the characters. Especially Nimona, she’s a powerful, murderous young girl, and I love her. She’s an incredibly compelling character, and I loved the initial mystery of whether Nimona was a girl pretending to be a monster, or a monster pretending to be a girl. I liked that Blackheart thought himself a villain, and absolutely was not one. I even liked the occasionally foolish and quite naive Goldenloin. Blackheart and Goldenloin’s relationship/romance was a nice surprise, and I was incredibly charmed by it.

I also really like Noelle Stevenson’s art style, and one thing that’s really cool about the book is that you get to see how her art develops and changes over the years. I also think the world is excellent; I found myself really enjoying the mix of the traditional medieval fantasy setting and modern/futuristic science and technology.

Nimona manages to be incredibly fun but genuinely touching at the same time. The humour in this book was spot-on for me, I found myself laughing and smiling all the time. But parts of this book made me sad, too. It’s impossible not to care about these characters, so when things get intense towards the end of the book, I was moved by it, and I did worry for some of the characters.

Overall, I loved this book. I’ve reread some of my favourite parts a few times since finishing it, and I actually upped it to a five star review after initially giving it four stars. It’s cute, it’s funny, and it’s probably one of my favourite books that I’ve read this year. I’m so glad I got around to reading it. It’s great fun, and I really cannot recommend it enough.

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