Nimona -  Noelle Stevenson
It's been awhile since I read a comic, apart from bits and pieces of webcomics here and there. So when I saw some of my favourite people raving about how great this comic book was, I thought it would be a nice change of reading scenery, and ordered a copy.

When I opened the package, I was delighted to see the cover! Maybe I'm not being entirely objective though, because the background is printed in my favourite colour...
Either way, I got pretty excited about reading it!

Lord Ballister Blackheart is a villain with a vendetta. Like most villains are, come to think of it. There's almost always a story on how they came to be this way. Sometimes even, the story is so big and intense that it gets a book of its own, like Gregory Maguire's Wicked.
So Lord Ballister Blackheart's case isn't very new and/or unique. Or is it? Is he actually a villain at all? Tu dun dun! I won't go into too much detail, because it's so much more fun to NOT know anything about the story, like I did.

The opening scene starts off with Nimona, just a regular sassy teenage girl with an interesting hairdo at first sight, applying to the non-existing job opening of Lord Ballister's sidekick. When it becomes apparent that she's a shapeshifter, however, she gets the 'job' anyways.
The story then unfolds itself from 'sweet and funny' to 'mysterious and funny' to 'sad and funny' to 'brutal and funny', to 'brutal and sad'. It's like peeling an onion, tears included at the end (god, that sounds so sappy, but it's true!).

Now I'm almost forgetting the (I found to be) hilarious character of Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin, the designated hero (or is he?) in the book, who is clearly queer as feck. There are some references to a possible romantic past with Lord Ballister, which I thought to be pretty neat!

I think the characters were given a soul very well in general. I definitely loved Lord Ballister!
To my surprise though, I found Nimona a bit annoying most of the time. I hadn't expected that at all, because a. she's been drawn as a normal teenage girl instead of a busty unnatural looking one and b. she's a shapeshifter, need I say more?! Yet to me, she often came off as whiny, chaotic and PMSing all the way (tu du du). I don't know what it is with female characters these days, but I find it hard to connect to any of them lately.

Now, I also don't know if it's because of my lack of reading comics for the past decade or so, but I found myself highly entertained with this book. I even had to slow myself down in reading it, because it was really fast-paced and I didn't want it to end yet! I'm giving it 4 stars and definitely recommending it to people who like comics, fairytales, science and laser guns.