Nommo Awards 2020 Longlist Announced with About a Dozen African Comics

May 3, 202012 min read

The longlist for this year’s Nommo Awards for Speculative Fiction by Africans has been released and features a range of comics from all over Africa. 

Every year, the Nommo Awards for speculative fiction highlights and rewards words of speculative fiction by Africans. This covers short stories, novellas, novels and our favorite, graphic novels and comics. 

The awards, now in its fourth year is organized by the African Speculative Fiction Society (ASFS) and awards up to $1,000 in the graphic novel category. This prize money is made possible by Tom Ilube, who has been the benefactor for the Nommo Awards since it started. 

Members of the ASFS nominate works for the longlist. The works with the most nominations go on to be shortlisted and voted for by ASFS members on the ASFS website. 

Winners are awarded during a ceremony at the Aké Arts and Book Festival in Lagos. there will be no ceremony this year, however, given the present Coronavirus crisis.

This year’s longlist is one of the broadest, including comics from all over the continent save for North Africa. 

For the long list of works in other categories, please visit the 2020 Nommo Awards for Speculative Fiction by Africans Long List

This year’s longlist of graphic novels and comics is detailed below in alphabetical order.

2020 Nommo Awards Graphic Novel Longlist Nominees

Beast From Venus

Author: Kiprop Kimutai

Artist: Salim Busuru

Publisher: Avandu Vosi

Origin: Kenya

Year: 2019

Beast from Venus is a comic which explores folklore from the Nandi community in Kenya about mysterious beasts that once roamed the plains. It tells the tale of Pkurui, who loves his father but is abandoned by him, and lives a hard life with his aunty who treats him as if he isn’t family. (Read a short review of Beast from Venus).


Blackmoon comic book by Tobe Ezeogu Comic Republic

Author: Tobe Max Ezeogu

Artists: Tobe Max Ezeogu, Ozo Ezeogu, Kelechi Isaac

Publisher: Comic Republic

Origin: Nigeria

Year: 2019

In a world far away, the masquerade society is the law. They are undying, un-questioned and un-judged, protecting the world of Ala from threats, home and beyond. Maduka, a boy born without the magic (Ora) that courses through the very nature of all things in Ala, attempts the impossible, a path that will change the world and those around him forever. 

Read Blackmoon.

Captain South Africa (Part 1: Origins)

cover of captain south africa superhero african comic from zimbabwe by bill masuku. 2020 Nommo Awards nominee

Author: Bill Masuku

Artists: Bill Masuku

Publisher: Enigma Comix Africa

Origin: Zimbabwe

Year: 2019

Captain South Africa was the pinnacle of superheroism in the country. He was a police officer that stepped up to take down crime to a record low and became the dam wall that kept evil at bay. He suddenly vanished forever and just like that, crime and villainy flooded the streets. As cities fell into ruin with rising inequality and unemployment, something new had to be the change, someone new. 

Three years later a new Captain South Africa has made her debut, she speaks of putting an end to all crime, not just saving the day, but saving the future.

Buy/read Captain South Africa.


Danfo comic by TAG comics. NOMMO Awards 2020 nominee

Author: Morakinyo Araoye, Steven Akinyemi

Artist: Ogim Ekpezu

Publisher: TAG Comics

Origin: Nigeria

Year: 2019

Danfo is the story of Emeka, a naive and kindhearted but weak and struggling Danfo driver in Lagos, Nigeria, who gains the blessing and protection of the Irawo Mejo. The Irawo Mejo are 9 ancient and powerful beings who hold the balance of the universe in their hands. Emeka loses two of these beings to dishonest people, who will stop at nothing to gain control over them.

Far off the coast of Lagos, a worldwide organization continues its hunt for the Irawo Mejo for their own nefarious desires. Will Emeka gain the strength to command these beings, ward off his pursuers and protect the world? (Read our Squid CoW review on Danfo by TAG Comics).

Read Danfo


Hawi by Beserat Debebe and Stanley Obende for Etan Comics. Nommo Awards 2020 nominee

Author: Beserrat Dbebe

Artist: Stanley Obende

Publisher: Etan Comics

Origin: Ethiopia

Year: 2019

When a mysterious stranger kidnaps the mother of 20-year-old Ement Legesse on their first trip back to Ethiopia, she must embark on a life-altering adventure embedded with historical conflict. Written in 2 languages & Created by an ALL AFRICAN team!

Buy/Read Hawi.

Iyanu Child of Wonder

Author: Roye Okupe

Artist: Godwin Akpan

Publisher: YouNeek Studios

Origin: Nigeria

Year: 2019

Iyanu chronicles the journey of a teenage orphan girl with no recollection of her past, who suddenly discovers that she has abilities that rival the ancient deities of her people. It is these abilities that are the key to bringing back the age of wonders and saving a world on the brink of destruction at the hands of The Corrupt — Cursed Wildlife and Divine Beasts desperate to destroy humanity.

Read Iyanu #1 and support the Kickstarter campaign


Jember by Etan Comics. Nommo Awards nominee

Author: Beserat Dbebe

Artist: Stanley Obende

Publisher: Etan Comics

Origin: Ethiopia

Year: 2019

Jember, the first Ethiopian Superhero comic book! Amanuel Tilahun is a recent college graduate desperately searching for a job in the bustling city of Addis Ababa – until his life is suddenly changed when he comes across extraordinary powers. But who truly is JEMBER? Where did his powers come from? How will it change his life? 

Buy/read Jember.


Kami Rwandan comic by Mika Hirwa. Nommo Awards 2020 nominee

Author: Mika Hirwa

Artist: Mika Hirwa

Publisher: Mika Hirwa

Origin: Rwanda

Year: 2019

Kami is a 13-year-old orphan living in Anatwe Village with his only two friends. He has toiled so hard to earn gold and can’t wait to start his quest to find his true parents. The ancestral spirits, however, interrupts his plans and chooses him be the keeper of their power. As with all great power, there’s a greedy psychopath who’ll stop at nothing to take it forcibly in order to be immortal. Kami is now faced with a choice, run away and cower or continue his quest to find his true parents and risk falling into the hands of the fearsome Msomajis. 

Read Kami #1 and Kami #2.


Moongirls graphic novel by Drama Queens Ghana. Nommo awards 2020

Authors: Akosua Hanson, Suhaidatu Dramani, George Hanson, Tsiddi Can-Tamakloe

Artist: AnimaxFYB Studios

Publisher: Drama Queens Gh

Authors: Akosua Hanson, Suhaidatu Dramani, George Hanson, Tsiddi Can-Tamakloe

Artist: AnimaxFYB Studios

Publisher: Drama Queens Gh

Moong`irls is an adult graphic novel series that follows the adventures of 4 Ghanaian supersheroes with varying superpowers. Through an afro-futurist lens, they fight for an Africa free from patriarchy, corruption, pollution, war, neo-colonialism, homophobia…an Africa Free period. 

Read Moongirls.

Land of Gods: Orun

Land of Gods comic cover Vortex Comics. Nommo awards nominee
Land of Gods by Vortex Comics

Author: Somto Ajuluchukwu

Artist: Gemahel Kamgain

Publisher: Vortex Comics

Origin: Nigeria

Year: 2019

Journey with Khashiya as she discovers a whole new world of magic and fantasy. A simple summer holiday turns into an epic adventure when she chances upon an ancient magic mirror, Ejikiri which takes her into Orun. There, she discovers that she is the chosen one destined to bring all realms together and peace to Orun. In the Land of Gods, Khashiya experiences the god within her.

Subscribe to read Land of Gods.


Nani graphic novel published by Kugali
Nani by Kugali

Author: Ziki Nelson

Artist: Jasonas Lamy

Publisher: Kugali

Origin: Nigeria

Year: 2019

Set in Nigeria, the story is centred on Mina, a young girl struggling to recover from the trauma of being assaulted and robbed at gunpoint. The incident leaves Mina feeling powerless so she takes up martial arts. Several years later history repeats itself as a two kidnappers attempt to abduct both Mina and her sister Lamin. 

In their attempt to escape the kidnappers the girls run into the forest but are soon transported to the magical world of Dama, a parallel world rife with magic, mythological creatures and beings inspired by African myths and Legends. 

Read Nani Part 1 and Nani Part 2 free for a limited time.


Sanu by Elupe Comics Uganda

Author: Charles Sentongo

Artist: Charles Sentongo

Publisher: Elupe Uganda

Origin: Uganda

Year: 2019

Sanu (means warrior in Sierra-leone) is a Ugandan superhero whose shocking past is not only going to change him but also the whole world in his quest to rescue his people from their own mentalities.

Sanu is available to purchase at Uganad Museum. Digital copies can be bought by contacting elupeug@gmail.com.

Welcome to Dead World

Welcome to Dead World Zimbabwe comic by Bill Masuku
Welcome to Dead World by Bill Masuku

Author: Bill Masuku

Artist: Bill Masuku

Publisher: Sam Graphico Anthology/ComicUp Anthology

Origin: Zimbabwe

Year: 2019

Welcome to Dead World is a love letter to Afrofuturism. The story is set in a composite post-apocalyptic world, rich with tribal tattoo tactile technology, spirit radiation, spell drives, soulware, and more. So much more. It serves as a small window into a grand sci-fi fantasy adventure by Bill Masuku.

Read Welcome to Dead World in either the Sam Graphico Anthology or ComicUp Anthology of Zimbabwean Comics

Congratulations to the nominees and best of luck.

Previous Nommo awards winners for comics and graphic novels include:

  • 2019 – Shuri: The Search for Black Panther (Nnedi Okorafor and Leonardo Romero)
  • 2018 – Lake of Tears (Kobina Ofei and Setor Fiadzigbey)
  • 2017 – Chimurenga’s ‘Chronic: The Corpse Exhibition and Older Graphic Stories’ – Chronic no. 3 (Various writers and artists. Edited by Ntone Edjabe)

Some comics entries nominated last year and thus not eligible were Tatashe by Cassandra Mark & Tobe Max Ezeogu and Rovik by Yvonne Waniyoke & Salim Busuru. 

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