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Nimona Hardcover – May 12, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up—This celebrated webcomic, a mash-up of medieval culture with modern science and technology, is now available in print. Lord Ballister Blackheart, a knight, has assumed the role of a supervillain in order to expose the nefarious schemes of the kingdom's front organization, The Institute of Law Enforcement. The kingdom's champion is Lord Blackheart's nemesis and former best friend, Sir Ambrose Goldenloin. Blackheart's prickly relationship with Goldenloin further explores the limits of their friendship. Enter the title character, a brash young shapeshifter who doggedly follows Ballister until he agrees to take her on as a sidekick. Nimona's skills as a shapeshifter up the ante in the ongoing rivalry between Ambrose and Ballister. Despite her anger management issues, the teen becomes Ballister's invaluable ally and together they form an alliance of mutual trust and dependence. Action scenes dominate as Nimona shifts with Hulk-like ferocity from frightful creatures such as a fire-breathing dragon to a docile cat or a timid child. Dialogue is fresh and witty with an abundance of clever lines. A complementary color palette of Blackheart's muddy browns contrasts with Goldenloin's fresh transparent yellow-greens. Both color schemes highlight Nimona's intense reds. Readers will note subtle visual differences in webcomic images. The print edition includes an exclusive epilogue not available online. At its core, Nimona is a story of rescue. Each of the main characters rescue allies, friendships, the Kingdom, and ultimately, themselves. VERDICT A vibrant solo work from "Lumberjanes" (Boom!) cocreator.—Barbara M. Moon, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY
“Noelle Stevenson has a knack for capturing the humor and heart in a situation in just a few panels.” (Rainbow Rowell, New York Times bestselling author of Eleanor and Park)
“If you’re going to read one graphic novel this year, make it this one.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
“Sharp visuals, a nifty amalgam of fantasy and science fiction elements, and relationships drawn with complexity, wit, and depth create a world worth returning to again and again.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“At its core, Nimona is a story of rescue. Each of the main characters rescue allies, friendships, the Kingdom, and ultimately, themselves… A vibrant solo work.” (School Library Journal (starred review))
“[Stevenson’s] voice is clear and precise, her drawings confident, her use of color growing in depth and assurance as the story progresses.” (New York Times)
“Nimona…is beautifully flawed and refreshingly unstereotypical in a book that is both darkly witty and surprisingly touching. And Nimona is a protagonist to both love and fear.” (The Horn Book)
“Over the course of the collected Nimona, it’s possible to watch artist Noelle Stevenson blossom from a student to a superstar.” (NPR.org)
“Nimona, with all her flaws, breaks away completely from what women are allowed to be in popular fiction.” (Vanity Fair)
“Graphic novel fans will finish the book in a gallop and then want to start right back at the first page.” (Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books (starred review))
“Awesome and adorable.” (Ryan North, author of Dinosaur Comics)
Top customer reviews
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Slate reviewers said of Nimona, "[It's] [f]unny and vibrant. A kind of deadpan epic," and it's hard to describe the experience of the work in any other way (I also strongly recommend reading the reviews from the New York Times and the UK's the Independent). The never named fantasy realm the characters inhabit, with it's medieval setting and many anachronistic elements, also deepens the sense of...well, magic. The detailed choices of what looks modern by reader's perspective versus what remains in a more medieval style is really interesting, but doesn't distract and makes you want to know more about this world and dive deeper. In the same way, Stevenson tooled around with a number of stylistic options before deciding on the work that we see now, and in reading the bonus pages offered in the graphic novel you can see clearly how that choice impacts the action and movement present in each panel and our investment in the characters generating these actions. Color is another element which was obviously thought out carefully in the creation of Nimona. With Blackheart's and Goldenloin's names not only having color present in their names, but their designs being dark versus light to symbolically reinforce their positions as villain and hero - and then totally reject that cliché and turn it on it's head!
Nimona is truly a work of art in both the visual and literary sense. Something that is gripping and tender and appropriate for all ages. Such an impressive and beautiful work.
Sadly she has read only 2 books ever until now. She LOVED Nimona and read it cover to cover in one sitting. She wants the sequel. :( Sadly there isn't one yet, but I am searching for the next and excited about what I can find that's out there for her.
She has no interest in audio books though I've tried several times and she has 4 paperbacks she really wanted collecting dust too.
This is exciting...my daughter asking and reading!! Whoop Whoop!!
Nimona was recommended to me by a friend from a writing group I manage (who was also nice enough to let me borrow her copy since my book budget is non-existent right now). From the books she had seen me reading, she thought it was a graphic novel I would enjoy. And she was right!
Nimona was magical. I was hooked by the first page and read it in about 3 days. I loved Noelle Stevenson’s art style and I loved the overall story. It reminded me a lot of a short story I had written several years ago combined with a one act play I wrote in college. The characters were beautifully created, and I especially loved the spunky Nimona who was there to shake up the traditional ways of the hero and villain. I also loved the potential love story that just poked it’s head out a little bit. I would love to learn more about all of the characters and know what happened to them after this story ended.
As someone who doesn’t usually read graphic novels, Nimona was one of those stories that made me want to check out more just like it. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a good fantasy/sci fi crossover.