Lumberjanes #38 ComicWow! Review

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Parents’ Day continues at the Lumberjanes’ camp. In this issue, the girls and their parents are on a scavenger hunt in the woods near the camp. The Lumberjanes are doing everything they can to keep their parents from seeing any paranormal activity, but things don’t go according to plan when Ripley’s Abuela turns out to be the kind of paranormal creature the girls were hoping to avoid.

Watters and Leyh make this issue go by quickly in a fast-paced scavenger hunt with enthusiastic characters—especially April. The girls’ personalities really shine through. April wants to win, Ripley wants to have fun, Jo wants to keep the parents oblivious, Molly is pretty shy but she gets along well with Mal, who has a crush on her and lets it show through little gestures. Back at camp, Jen and Rosie are getting concerned about why everyone hasn’t come back yet…

In this one issue, we can tell what kind of person each character is. Lumberjanes has a really eclectic cast of characters, and I absolutely love it. Minority groups are represented well, especially the LGBTQ+ community, with a lesbian couple (Molly and Mal), gay parents (Jo’s dads), and a transgender character (Jo). I strongly believe that kids need to be desensitized to the LGBTQ+ community and prevalence of it in society, so for an all ages book to include such strong characters therein is something I fully support and adore.

Things take a turn for the worse at the end of this issue, so it looks like the girls’ paranormal secret is out. So far, just Jo and Ripley have seen the “monster,” but their parents aren’t far behind. If they do see it, it’ll be interesting to see how they react. If they don’t see it, how will the girls solve this mystery without their parents finding out about it?

Sotuyo’s illustrations are really animated. This art style takes away from any realism in the story, but certainly adds to the urgency. That’s because a cartoonish art style allows for very hyperbolic and emotive facial expressions. Facial features are presented as disproportionate, but it looks perfectly normal for the style of illustration. Bright colors are used to depict the scavenger hunt, but things get darker towards the end of the issue when the suspense and danger looms.

This issue perfectly depicts each main character’s personality and puts the Lumberjanes in yet another dangerous situation. Seeing as they’re all split up into teams, I’m not sure how all of them are going to take on the issue together—if at all—but I’m excited to find out! If you are, too, make sure to head to your local comic shop and keep up with the series!

Written by: Shannon Watters & Kat Leyh

Illustrated by: Ayme Sotuyo