I know, I know, I’m way late on this one–Nimona came out last year and everyone adored it, everyone’s already posted review after review talking about how much they loved the book. But between trying to finish a degree, freelance writing and trying to figure out what I want to do with my life, I really haven’t had much time for reading. However, last night I finally had the chance to read it, and now I can let you know that, like the rest of the world, I really liked Nimona.
If you’re one of the 0.2% people of the world who hasn’t yet read Nimona, let me give you a little rundown of both the book and its author. Noelle Stevenson, the book’s creator, is perhaps better known as gingerhazing, a fan artist who creates adorable little pieces of fanart and awesome “hipster” version of Lord of the Rings characters.
Nimona was originally published as a webcomic but was collected into one big ol’ graphic novel last year by Harper-Collins, available in both hardback and paperback. The graphic novel version includes some fun sketches at the book’s end, depicting Stevenson’s original character designs and a cute mini holiday-themed comic.
The story itself is a fun and unexpectedly emotional one; what begins as a lighthearted, pun/one-liner filled story about a girl and her willingness to tag along with her favourite villain soon turns into an exploration of what it means to be a hero, what it means to be a villain, and what it means to mean something to the people that surround you.
Nimona was also an unexpectedly fun mix of genres, from the cover artwork I was expecting some straight-up High Fantasy and got instead a wonderful blend of Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Adventure,Comedy and a dash of Romance. At first, it was a little odd seeing armour-clad Guards using digital watches and video conference screens, but you soon settle into Nimona‘s world and start to look forward to seeing what new technologies Stevenson will create for her characters to play with. The mix of genres also works well with the story’s unashamed quirkiness; the use of laser guns by men in plate armour and cloaks is not addressed as being odd within the story’s world, and so fits in just as well as all the talks of swords and dragons and past loves.
Though, speaking of romance, that is one of the things that maybe caught me a little off-guard with the book. I’ve seen Nimona heralded on Tumblr and other social media sites as being awesomely LGBT+ friendly, but the queer romance between its two main male characters is really implied more than anything else within the narrative. Perhaps I was expecting too much from this book, though, having read other people’s comments on it–if I’d known nothing of the book, the implied queer romance would have been a fun surprise as opposed to a mild let-down.
One thing I will say is that Stevenson is awesome at depicting female characters with a wide range of body types and appearances–Nimona herself is portrayed as almost stocky-looking, and the book also includes skinny women, tall women, large women…there’s a vast range of body types in use within the world of Nimona and I certainly appreciated it.
Overall, Nimona is a fun read that will catch you off-guard with its mature sense of emotion and heart. If you haven’t already read Nimona, you should, especially if like me you love history, adventure, puns and dragons. Harper-Collins recommends the book for ages teen and upwards.
Interested in purchasing your own copy of Nimona, or some of Stevenson’s other work? Click below: