Fiction, YA? Fantasy/Graphic Novel/Humor
DESCRIPTION: The Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics has long kept the peace in the kingdom, its champion Ambrosius Goldenloin always ready to cross swords with any monster or villain... particularly his nemesis, Ballister Blackheart. At least, that's what the news channels would have everyone believe. A former Institute student himself, Blackheart's seen the truth behind the golden facade - but he's never been able to convince anyone where the real danger is. Until, that is, he acquires a new and unexpected sidekick.
The girl Nimona comes from nowhere, a shapeshifter with flexible morals who insists on helping Blackheart with his evil plans. With her on his side, Ballister starts making progress exposing the Insititute's true nature... but the Director is willing to go to any lengths - and rack up any body count - to bring the archvillain down.
REVIEW: Similar to the Lumberjanes series (which Stevenson co-writes), Nimona mixes superficial humor and action with unexpected, sometimes dark character development. Blackheart and Goldenloin share a complicated history, long locked in a stalemate as hero and villain under the Institute's control, though the animosity is deeply personal. Nimona's arrival disrupts the equilibrium, her backstory and motivations stranger and darker than anyone's. The setting freely mixes science and magic, swords and guns, a weirdly wild world where just about anything can happen, with an explosive climax. As a minor complaint, the lettering was sometimes a little tough to read on my Nook screen, particularly the white lettering on neutral or light backgrounds. Ultimately, though, it's an excellent, often amusing story of the power of friendship and love, and the devastating damage wrought by betrayals big and small.
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