Remember the time, when this graphic novel was all over BookTube? I do. It was back in 2015, when everyone seems to be talking about. Naturally, I had to read it too and I am still so glad that I did. It was one of my most favourite reads of 2015, and definitely one of the most favourite graphic novels of all times. The art is corky, the humour is terrific, and the world is just pure fun.
If you somehow managed to miss out on the hype, here is the synopsis: it is a story about a snarky and impulsive shapeshifter girl named Nimona. She weasels her way into Lord Blackheart’s service. Lord Blackheart, a local villain, has a certain beef with Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics and one knight in particular, Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin. Blackheart is convinced that both the Institute and Goldenloin aren’t that goody-goody as they appear. Nimona is willing to help (and cause some serious damage). But there is more than meets the eye to all of them.
I adored Blackheart in the graphic novel. His exasperation with Nimona and deadpan humour are simply the best. I enjoyed the novel a lot, all parts of it. It kept me glued to my couch until I was done with the last page (which made me go ‘awwwwww’, by the way).
Naturally, I had to get my own copy of this comic. And when I accidentally found out that it was made into an audiobook, I just had to have it right now! Moreso, when I learned that Blackheart is voiced by Jonathan Davis - I loved his narration of Catalyst (Star Wars novel) and was even more excited.
Jonathan Davis does an amazing job as Blackheart. I think I liked Blackheart even more (if it is even possible). He doesn’t sound like a villain at all. More like a really exasperated parent, when he is dealing with Nimona. Rebecca Soler really managed to convey both impatience and multifacetedness of Nimona’s character. She sounds like a true villain sidekick! Marc Thompson voices Sir Goldenloin and he is so snotty - he reminds me of posh kids at private schools, who think they are better than everybody else.
To put it shortly, it is a superb cast!
The audiobook also features various sound effects and original music. Understandably, not everything can be translated from a purely visual media to audio, but I think they did a great job. There was one tiny weeny thing that made me sad - and that is the very last frame in the graphic novel that gave me so much hope for those two characters’ relationship (not saying who as it is a spoiler), but it was not conveyed in audio. Implied, but not conveyed. And for me that last frame made all the difference, to be honest. It is a tiny thing, really, but it mattered to me.
Overall, an extremely enjoyable read and a very fun audiobook to listen to. Highly recommend to both graphic novels and audiobook lovers.
Graphic novel: 5 stars
Audiobook: 4.5 stars
Performance: 5 stars