When Sam Alexander took over the role as the last Nova, it was like a breath of fresh air being blown into a stagnant and very bland superhero. It helped start Marvel down the road of modern day diversity and youthfulness. Sam became an Avenger in his own right and like Jamie Reyes (Blue Beetle) from DC, he is the only Nova that a generation of comic readers and Disney XD watchers know of.
And then.... I don't know.... We all just stopped paying attention. Nova faded into the background.
So taking a cue from DC, whose managed to "Rebirth" their heroes, Marvel has been bringing back fallen heroes all over the place (see Clone Conspiracy). So, uh, welcome back to the Nova Corp Rich Rider.
Sam Alexander, Miles Morales, and Kamala Khan quit the Avengers after Carol Danvers puts an end to Tony Stark (sigh). They form "The Champions" but in all three cases they have teenage alibis to maintain. If Sam has to save a sentient bearded planet from a bug infestation, he still needs to show up to school, preferably not while embarrassing himself to the new girl.
Elsewhere, a resurrected Rich Rider is dealing with the death of his father. He seems to be having weird visions of death related things (go figure), and maybe the best way to clear his head is to go for a quick flight.
But all doesn't go as planned when a pain comes over Rich while in orbit. He doubles over in pain and begins a free fall to earth with a strange energy emanating from him (probably just gas).
The allusions I made to Blue Beetle are extremely apropos on the character identity standpoint. I always though Jaime and Sam were brothers born in two different universes. Now they both have someone who used to have their job back in the picture. It Blue Beetles case, Ted has no memory of the changes in continuity (poor poor Booster), but in Rich's case, he seems to know everything. I see Sam and Rich being even more at odds than Jaime and Ted, and that is saying something.
To be honest, a break down of the story isn't really that hard. Rich is back but there is something wrong with him. Sam is still the awkward little goof we fell in love with. That's all we got. Not much of a story yet, but man was it fun reading. This is where we get to the heart of the writing. The dialog is laugh out loud funny. Perez and Loveness give Sam a joy that haven't seen in Nova during Sean Ryan's stint as writer.
Perez's art is also amazing lighthearted, but also has that little bit of sinister edge that you see lurking in the corners. Just look at Rich's smile in the panel above. When an artist works so well as a writer that he shares the writer block, you know you've got bucket(head) loads of talent.
So buy this book, even if nothing of import really happens. It's just plain fun.