Comic book reviews for Lumberjanes: Faire and Square #1, Lumberjanes #38, and Lumberjanes #39 by Holly Black, Marina Julia, Gabby Rivera, Gaby Epstein, Shannon Watters, Kat Leyh, and Ayme Sotuoy
Average rating: 3.75/5 stars
Lumberjanes: Faire and Square #1
“Faire and Square” by Holly Black
Art: Marina Julia
I really loved this story quite a bit. Usually, I haven’t been 100% enamored with new teams on Lumberjanes because I do think it takes writers and artists a moment to “discover” who these girls are.
That always comes back to friendship. And how young and trusting they are to everyone until proved otherwise. Plus, putting the Lumberjane crew into a renfaire was a great touch.
I loved how Jen didn’t think there really was one, and she was so happy at the idea that they’d all go on a hike together. Poor Jen! She got costumes and jousting instead.
Rowena immediately becomes one of their friends. They worry about her when she disappears after giving them a tour. They already care about her. This is key to all these stories.
I loved Rowena’s fox mask. Julia did an incredible job with character design here. Of course, you knew it was Rowena all along. If the Robin Hood connection wasn’t a big enough clue.
Of course, there’s a dinosaur and a hidden dimensional pocket to sent it through. I love that idea that the dinos all end up in 1561 in North Yorkshire. Of course, they do.
Just like, of course, Ripley wants to ride Birdie and then Mal accidentally ends up being the one who does.
My only slight criticism of this is Julia’s art makes the girls look older than tweens. Mal in particularly looks like a hot soft stud, and like, I’m 34, so that was uncomfortable.
“Las Estrellas Del Campo: Edición Lumberjanes” by Gabby Rivera
Art: Gaby Epstein
This was super sweet. Poor Ripley missed out some updates about her favorite telenovela. This was a great cultural touchpoint for her.
It also showed how much the girls care for and notice changes in each other’s behaviors. Ripley not being herself by not running around all the time or not waiting for the next adventure (or embarking on it), was a big change.
I loved how the other girls rallied around her as they made up their own stories about what happened on Las Estrellas.
Lumberjanes #38 by Shannon Watters and Kat Leyh
Art: Ayme Sotuoy
There are a lot of characters in this comic, and I haven’t quite gotten attached to all the parents and their personalities. This means some of the panel flow, especially when they were running away from the prankster animals, didn’t work so well for me. In fact, I thought the two groups had lost more than Ripley’s abuela.
This issue felt light. We have some April competitiveness, which we’ve seen in many other issues. We had the girls hiding the supernatural from their parents. We still have Mal and Molly’s romance blooming, and Molly’s lack of parental figure. But where else are we going?
Why do the girls fall for the bad list? Why isn’t Jen with them? Why is Rosie even letting the parents go into the forest? Is there a secret Lumberjanes patch for keeping the supernatural secret from their families during family weekend?
I’m needing more charm than a ‘kick me’ sign placed by raccoons.
Lumberjanes #39 by Shannon Watters and Kat Leyh
Art: Ayme Sotuoy
I finally figured out my issues with Sotuoy’s art. It’s definitely her Charlie Brown style mouths on the girls. It makes them less realistic than before, and the mouth provides the chance for incredible expressions and this style leaves that behind.
My favorite part was definitely Bear Woman and Ripley’s abuela just hanging out and having tea. Of course, they would become friends. I wanted more of this and less of the rest of it. Of course, sometimes I have to remember that I’m not quite the young adult demographic.
I would’ve loved the Fox. But of course, the Fox is the friend who takes practical jokes too far, and does not understand that those jokes are not funny. This is the lesson we’re learning here. I do wonder how the Fox has convinced all the other animals to do its bidding.
We shall see how this goes.