Review: Nimona

nimonaNimona by Noelle Stevenson
Published: 12.05.2015 by HarperTeen
Genre: Graphic novel, fantasy
Rating: 4/5 stars – ★★★★

Synopsis: 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.


I’ve wanted to read Nimona ever since I read her other graphic novel series, Lumberjanes. I really loved Lumberjanes, because it was all about young girls being themselves and having fun. So when I saw this graphic novel was about a woman who becomes the sidekick of a villain, I knew I had to read it. 

Honestly, this graphic novel is so much fun but at the same time, I loved the themes it included.  I loved Nimona herself, because she was always up for something crazy. Just follow the plan, Nimona! It was just the most interesting plot line, because Nimona is the most interesting character. Always up for some mayhem -and maybe murder too.

I don’t really want to say anything about the plot of the story, because you need to figure that out yourself. Also, it’s only 260 pages, so just jump in knowing as little as possible. I will say though, that I didn’t see the ending coming at all. It was much more heart warming, yet painful than I expected. I felt for these characters, even though I’ve only been with them a short time.

Like I said, I also really enjoyed the themes it included -and Noelle Stevenson didn’t shy away from. Nimona was an orphan, but that’s not all she was. She was so much more than the damaged orphan who doesn’t really trust anyone, that we so often see in (fantasy) stories. There were also a lot of times the author drew right and wrong into question. For example, this is some of the text from a certain panel:

 ‘You wouldn’t.’
‘No, I wouldn’t. And I’m the villain. What do you suppose that says about you?’

I obviously can’t tell you what that scene is about, but it’s interesting to see the morality of the hero and the villain challenged. Lastly, the graphic novel also includes an LGBTQ+ character. I don’t think it’s really said, but it’s quite obvious when you’re reading. I actually quite like that it wasn’t necessarily said, because that makes it seem like any other relationship. (Which of course it is, but you know what I mean) 

While I wasn’t the biggest fan of some of the drawings or illustration style, I did still find it enjoyable.

I’d highly recommend this graphic novel to you. It’s a fun story, with a lot more themes to make you think than I would’ve thought possible for such a short story. It has fun characters, dragons, shapeshifters and EVIL!


17 thoughts on “Review: Nimona

  1. I have heard a lot about the graphic novel! I want to try it for myself as well. The artwork doesn’t look to intricate, but it seems like the content is what really grips you about this book. And I love that this author challenges opinions about these themes in a graphic novel which is readable for so many people.


  2. This does sound like a bunch of fun with a whole lot of things going on! I will make a note – I don’t read a lot of graphic novels but that’s something I should work on!
    Lynn 😀


  3. I read Nimona fairly recently and loved it. I was not expecting it to be as deep as it was.
    The ending took me by surprise too, and I really hopes she writes more from these characters. Great review Jolien!


  4. I loved Nimona. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy the illustration style – I thought it was a perfect match for the story. I have to get Lumberjanes, I’ve seen great reviews.

    And yeah, I loved the depth of the story, too, I thought it would be more shallow but Stevenson is really great.


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