Book Review: Ms. Marvel Omnibus, Volume 1 by G. Willow Wilson

Image Description: the book-cover of Ms. Marvel Omnibus, Volume 1. The main focus of the front cover a young lady with brown hair and brown skin wearing a red body-suit with a navy blue dress over the top of the red body-suit. The navy-blue dress has a yellow lightning bolt down the front. Ms. Marvel also has a bright red and yellow cape billowing out behind her while she stands in a power-pose.

Title: Ms. Marvel Omnibus, Vol. 1 (Collected Editions: 1-4)
Author, Artist and Illustrator: G. Willow Wilson (Author), Adrian Alphona (Artist), Mark Waid, Dan Slott, Jacob Wyatt (Artist), Elmo Bondoc (Artist), Takeshi Miyazawa (Artist), Sara Pichelli (Illustrator) , Jake Wyatt (Illustrator), Jamie McKelvie (Illustrator), Humberto Ramos (Illustrator), Marguerite Sauvage (Illustrator), Giuseppe Camuncoli (Illustrator), Kris Anka (Illustrator)
Social Media: Goodreads
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Format and Price: Hardback book from my local library
Rating: 5 out of 5

About The Book:
The complete first season of Marvel’s international sensation between two covers! Kamala Khan is an ordinary girl from Jersey City – until she suddenly gains extraordinary gifts. But who is she now? Teenager? Muslim? Inhuman? As Kamala explores her newfound powers in the guise of the new Ms. Marvel, she takes on the maniacal Inventor, teams up with Wolverine and Spider-Man, meets the Inhuman royal family, adopts their teleporting dog Lockjaw, faces the mischief of Loki, and finally hangs out with her idol Captain Marvel! All while facing the regular girl problems of family, first love and…the end of the world? If Kamala Khan isn’t your favorite hero yet, read this and she will be!

General Observations:

~Single Issues VS Collections: I have this same problem with the Saga series (which I highly recommend), do I purchase the single issues or do I wait for the collated volume to come out? The thing with Image Comics is that it allows you to buy it online in digital (PDF) format, so there’s no shipping fees, and no waiting. I’m not sure how the Marvel Comics website operates, I would presume they would have similar options, but sometimes publishers can surprise you with their lack of access.

I just happened to be looking through the Graphic Novel/Manga section of my local library and found this. This isn’t the type of thing I would normally purchase (especially not hardback – way too expensive for an Australian reader), but the library made it much easier to access. The omnibus can seem expensive to purchase, however, if each volume is $10-$12 each, it might work out cheaper for you to buy the collected edition, it just depends on your circumstances.

~Fish Out of Water: Kamala Khan is not your typical Marvel Comic superhero and it is glorious! Kamala is “acceptably clumsy” as she gets more comfortable with her powers and abilities, however, I feel as though Kamala’s most endearing quality is how she is such a fan-girl of the Marvel Comic universe. Her reactions to teaming up with Wolverine and Spiderman are hilarious and relatable. I adore Lock-Jaw, I want my own giant teleporting-dog damn it!

There’s also the cultural elements that are included and written super well, I think it helps that G. Willow Wilson (the author) is Muslim as well, I really like how Kamala and Bruno handle the potential “End of The World As We Know It” situation, sometimes you can try your best and still lose (Damn you Cliff-hanger!).

~Coming of Age: There’s definitely your standard Young Adult Coming of Age narrative-elements in there, finding out your place in the world, figuring out how to use your super-powers you acquired in a weird green fog, you know, the usual. There’s a fine balancing act between the superhero elements of the Plot and the Young Adult moments of Character and what it feels like to be young. With Ms. Marvel, I feel that the balance is done well, there is some focus on the protagonist’s love-life, but it’s plot-relevant and doesn’t take over the story.

Ms. Marvel hits all the right Coming of Age beats while still being unique and enjoyable. It’s perfect for a Young Adult audience but I can also see this as having a lot of cross-over appeal. The comic also covers some social issues without being too preachy about it. I’ve seen this story done over and over and, especially with regards to Marvel, it’s not always done well, and it’s a relief to see this type of story is being done well, but it’s also commercially successfully too. (I may have avoided reading this series due to hype aversion)

All in all, if you’re a fan of Marvel comics and enjoy female protagonists in YA, I highly recommend Ms. Marvel, you should definitely check it out.

Available for Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository

Image Description: an image with a black background and white text. In the center of the image is the text, “RMFAO Genre Challenge”, at the edges of the circle there is more text, “2018” in pink text on either side of the image.

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