Review: Lumberjanes Vol. I

21876672Title: Lumberjanes (Volume I)
Author: Noelle Stevenson & Grace Ellis
Publisher: Green Darner Press
Release Date: May 2015
Length: 32 pages
Series?: Lumberjanes
Genre: Graphic Novel, YA, Fantasy

Find the book: Goodreads | Amazon

Five best friends spending the summer at Lumberjane scout camp…defeating yetis, three-eyed wolves, and giant falcons…what’s not to love?!

Friendship to the max! Jo, April, Mal, Molly and Ripley are five best pals determined to have an awesome summer together…and they’re not gonna let any insane quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way!

LUMBERJANES is one of those punk rock, love-everything-about-it stories that appeals to fans of basically all excellent things. It’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Gravity Falls and features five butt-kicking, rad teenage girls wailing on monsters and solving a mystery with the whole world at stake.

 

***** Review *****

The Skinny

The Roanoke Cabin, led by Jen, is known for their exploits. Friends Jo, April, Mal, Molly and Ripley stick together like PB&J and have some exciting – and dangerous – adventures at this Camp for Hardcore Lady Types. There’s a mix of backwoods country, rockabilly and urban teen all mixed into the characters. The girls stumble upon some really strange things around camp, and as the summer goes on and strange things continue happening, they are set on solving the mysteries. They encounter all manner of craziness and creatures along the way, so they stick to their core camp concepts: stranger danger and friendship to the max.

The Players

Jo – a tall Davy Crocket type who seems to like Mal

April – the fierce yet kind redhead of the group, she is an odd mix of Disney princess and warrior

Mal – a punkrock hipster kind of girl who seems to kind of like Jo

Molly – a tall Lumberjack type who knows all things Lumberjanes, she is also very sarcastic and smart alecky

Ripley – cares strongly about things like kittens and cake, easily distracted, appears to be the youngest of the group

Jen – the camp counselor for the girls, she is very good at loosing the girls and gets very flustered

Rosie – the director of the Camp for Hardcore Lady Types

The Quote

So we were in our bunks just like we were supposed to be, right? And we heard a rumble and a whoosh, and then we saw – well, Jo and I saw – the super weird old lady outside the cabin.

So I went down into April’s bunk because of , y’know, stranger danger.

– SHE WAS LIKE SUPER WEIRD, LIKE THIS –

And THEN the woman said a lot of swears I’d never heard before and then WOOOOSH and AHH BRIGHT LIGHTS and then there was a BEAR!

So Jo and I woke up all of our friends because “FRIENDSHIP TO THE MAX,” obviously, and we went after it and then there were foxes and here we are.

The Highs and Lows

  • / Plot. The plot had its good and bad points. There wasn’t much of a real plot there, just a jumble of various adventures. The chapters center around an adventure to get a particular Lumberjane badge, but the events themselves are kind of all over the place. Even the dialogue between characters was a bit off at times, like the characters were on in some inside joke and readers were left with no clue. There was the whole Kitten Holy thing in the first chapter, which also came back full circle in the end and they found out what it meant, but otherwise there was no significant plot development.
  • + Ripley. If I could have been anyone in this crazy adventure of the Camp for Hardcore Lady Types, I would want to be Ripley. She goes with the flow and doesn’t get caught up in the details. Kittens and cake and unicorns and puppies all the way!
  • + The Art. The artwork and illustration are terrific! I wish my life could be designed and illustrated like this.
  • + Jen. She is the classic worrywart, and it is clear she loves her group of girls – crazy adventures and elevated blood pressure and all.
  • – Rosie. There were a few moments that Rosie seemed…odd. I can’t quite put my finger on how to describe it, but I don’t trust her.  But she definitely and clearly is meant to be a reincarnation of Rosie the Riveter…with a sophisticated Daphne look.
  •  / Humor. The authors and illustrator clearly spent time developing the Lumberjanes and the humor of the dialogue and the drawings had me giggling while I flipped the glossy pages. Sometimes I got the impression the authors were trying to hard to push a lot of references. I have a movie and music buff in the friend circle, and even I was lost on some of the references. Like make up tutorials, less is more. Sometimes it was a little overdone. However, when the humor was on, it was on.

The Take-Away

I liked the focus on certain characters throughout the entire volume. Each character had a little spotlight and readers had the opportunity to get insight into them as individuals, but also in pairs.

Recommendation – Buy, Borrow or Skip? 

Borrow. If I continue reading the series, I doubt I’ll continue to buy the physical books. I will try to borrow from libraries or friends to keep reading the series. This is in large part due to the sporadic plot.

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6 thoughts on “Review: Lumberjanes Vol. I

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