Reviews for Nubia: Real One, by L.L. McKinney

shellyzev's review

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emotional medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

danicaleblanc's review

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challenging hopeful informative medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

4.0

nightwing's review

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dark emotional hopeful tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

 Received an ARC from Edelweiss+ in exchange for an honest review.

Nubia is an average girl struggling with typical teen problems, dating drama, strict parents, and super-strength. Wait, super-strength?

In the comics, Nubia was Diana of Themyscira's twin sister until Ares kidnapped her. This story follows the same aspect of the comic history behind Nubia which is nice. Thankfully, Ares does not get a chance to make her into a villain and Diana saves her and gives her to two loving mothers.

I really enjoyed the stylized artwork in the story, especially the bright colors, it felt unique and was well-handled. The callbacks to the protests across the country were drawn beautifully well and you could see every bit of emotion being poured into it.

The story was incredibly poignant and relevant to the political and social turmoil happening in America right now. As reviewers have said, it can hit too close to home, so be wary about the content!

I really hope this expands into a series with the same artist/writer handling it because it'd be fantastic! Nubia is a very relatable protagonist and I love her support system with her mothers and friends, I'd love to see more of them as well. A must-read! 

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mafaldareading's review

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challenging funny hopeful reflective tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character

4.5

lesserknownhero's review

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adventurous challenging dark emotional funny fast-paced

5.0

helenareadsbooks's review

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challenging dark emotional inspiring reflective sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

5.0

Nubia: Real One tells the story of teenage Nubia trying to live a normal life. This is a different Nubia than what we’re used to seeing in the comics - she is younger here and not yet the superpowered Amazon hero and twin sister of Wonder Woman that we know. Which is great, I appreciate the creative team for wanting to tell a different story. We get to see her doing normal teenage things like having fun with her friends, arguing with her mothers, and having a crush.

But this is also a story that is grounded in the Black Lives Matter movement, one that fully realizes what it is like to be a Black teenager in a society that doesn’t see you as a person. Theres a lot of depth and emotion to this story, and the latter half quite heavy. Nubia is a Black superhero and this graphic novel explores exactly what that means. Nubia’s growth as she learns how to navigate this world and stand up for what’s right is admirable and inspiring.

I’ve never read such a powerful and impactful story in superhero comics and honestly, its about damn time we got a story like this. It’s important to note that this graphic novel was created by a trio of Black womxn. More often than not we see white, usually male, comic creators attempting to create stories like this that completely miss their mark and come across as insensitive. So its a big deal that McKinney, Smith, & Henderson hold the space for something like Nubia: Real One to exist. It is incredibly well written and the art is wonderful. I think a lot of people will appreciate the care and detail put into the illustrations (especially when it comes to Nubia’s hair!). 

Nubia: Real One is a story that we need and deserve. I hope you pick it up but be aware of the content warnings which are stated on the first page of the graphic novel.

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princesspeachry's review

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adventurous challenging emotional funny hopeful inspiring fast-paced

antonique_reads's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging dark emotional hopeful inspiring tense fast-paced

5.0

anniekslibrary's review

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4.0

This was my first time reading a DC comic - I've always been more of a Marvel fan, but I've been wanting to branch out a little. I don't know a lot about DC's world building and characters, but this was a really accessible comic.

The comic was initially focused on Nubia's day-to-day life, and it especially delves into how difficult it is for Nubia as a Black superhero: where her white counterparts are praised for saving the day, she ends up in handcuffs. It's a story very clearly set in 2020, dealing with gun violence, police brutality and BLM protests, showing the reality of what it's like to be Black in America. And showing very clearly how dystopian the current reality is.

Unfortunately I wasn't the biggest fan of the art work. It's just not a style that appeals to me very much.

CWs: police brutality, school shooting, armed robbery, gun violence, racism, blood

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melaniereadsbooks's review against another edition

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challenging emotional informative inspiring reflective fast-paced

5.0

Thank you to Netgalley and DC Entertainment for a digital arc of this graphic novel.

Nubia has grown up moving from town to town to avoid other's noticing her superpowers. As a Black girl, her and her moms know she would not be treated the way a superhero should be treated if she was revealed. When Nubia accidentally exposes herself once again, she has to make a choice--hide her true identity and leave her life here, or become the superhero she was always meant to be!

Meanwhile, her best friend is organizing a peaceful protest against the murder of a young Black person by police, and Nubia has to make a big choice...

This book was amazing from start to finish. It immediately gripped me with the fast-paced storyline, funny and real dialogue, and gorgeous illustrations. The messages throughout this book are completely necessary to today's world (and yesterday's) and it teaches a lot of important things. I'm so glad this book was made.

Please be careful before picking up this book, and read the content warnings, as it deals with very heavy and traumatic topics.

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