Published by HarperCollins, HarperTeen on May 12th 2015. ARC: 272 pages.
Source: From Publisher, Goodreads Firstreads
Genres: Action & Adventure, Comics & Graphic Novels, Fantasy, Humor/Satire, Young Adult
Nemeses! Dragons! Science! Symbolism! All these and more await in this brilliantly subversive, sharply irreverent epic from Noelle Stevenson. Featuring an exclusive epilogue not seen in the web comic, along with bonus conceptual sketches and revised pages throughout, this gorgeous full-color graphic novel is perfect for the legions of fans of the web comic and is sure to win Noelle many new ones.
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.
But as small acts of mischief escalate into a vicious battle, Lord Blackheart realizes that Nimona's powers are as murky and mysterious as her past. And her unpredictable wild side might be more dangerous than he is willing to admit.
What can I say about this book that has not already been said?
BECAUSE THIS BOOK IS SO AWESOME!
I read it for the first time WAAAAAY back, before it was published last May. And then I picked it up again in December to preview it before giving it as a Christmas gift to my teenage cousin. Both read-throughs I found myself completely absorbed in the story. This is just one of those books that hits you with humor and spunk on the first page, and it pulls you in so quickly that you barely have time to catch your breath!
And while this story is full of quirky humor and fun times, it also addresses some really deep subject matter and character development. Ballister is classified as a villain simply because he was kicked out of hero school, but as you read you begin to question exactly why he is “so villainous”. Spunky and energetic Nimona has a past tinged with sadness that allows her character to grow in such surprising ways. There is such a depth to the world that Stevenson creates in such a short time frame (as it is a standalone fantasy adventure!) that it is really hard not to read it in one sitting.
I bought this for my school library at the end of last semester. During my “Check out the new books” party the last week of school, one of my juniors came in and checked this book out. He asked if he could stay in the library and read for a while. An hour later, he returns it with the biggest smile on his face. “OH MY GOSH THIS BOOK WAS SO GOOD JUST LIKE YOU SAID!” About 5 minutes later, another student comes in looking for a graphic novel and student one grabs it off the display table and practically throws it in the new student’s hands! The second student checks it out and takes it home with him over Christmas break. The first day back this month he finds me in the cafeteria. “MRS POWELL! I READ THAT BOOK THREE TIMES OVER BREAK!”
If that’s not a good enough recommendation, I don’t know what is!
Read it. Then buy it for yourself and EVERYONE you know! Seriously!
Nimona is quirky, hilarious, and tells a well-developed story that both middle schoolers (especially 8th graders) and high schoolers will enjoy! Also, with such great character development and storytelling, this could be a gateway to getting teachers in your school excited about graphic novels, too!
My Bookshelf Rating:
OH EM GEE. This graphic novel is EVERYTHING YOU CAN EVER WANT! It’s laugh-out-loud hilarious, quirky, evilicious, and has so much heart. You immediately fall in love with the characters, you laugh with them, you feel with them. Such a perfect graphic novel, especially as a gateway into the graphic novel genre! I dare you to read this and NOT LOVE IT! 😉