1A. It’s a camp story. Specifically, it is Miss Qiunzilla Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet’s Camp for Hard-Core Lady-Types. (I love that “Lady-Types” could encompass a lot more than just ladies or girls.)
1B. If you’re someone who’s never been to camp or new to the concept of camp *points to self*, it’s okay. The world of the Lumberjanes is easy to sink into. If you’re someone who’s been to camp and hates it, you will love this world better, I promise. If you’re someone who’s been to camp and loves it, see above.
2. The characters are absolutely lovely!
I WILL NOT REST UNTIL ANYONE WHO CAN READ HAS MET THESE CHARACTERS! L-R, we have Jo, April, Mal, Molly, and Ripley.
Seriously, they are all so super-adorable.
3. Jen, their cabin leader, is the best, nerdiest camp leader ever. I love Jen. I think Jen needs to be protected at all costs.
4. Everyone’s swears are funny and unique. (Kind of like in Adventure Time, I guess.)
6. The Lumberjanes have to face off a whole bunch of monsters and oddities, ranging from three-eyed foxes, hipster yetis, living statues, river serpents, Greek Gods, and …
7. … oh yeah, hypnotized boy scouts intent on tearing them apart. That section remains one of my favourites because it talks very directly about toxic masculinity. (I believe the phrase, “I’m going to go catch a fish by wrestling it from a bear!” was used at some point.)
8. These two volumes cover one whole story arc and feels very much complete, in case you’re like Nafiza, who doesn’t like long waits between volumes.
9. They’re making a movie. Don’t you want to be a good nerd and read the book first?
Yeah, okay, that didn’t sound convincing to me either.
10. The Lumberjanes’ adventures are split up into sections by some incredibly funny text from the Lumberjanes Field Manual regarding certain badges– *cough*Pungeon Master*cough*– that hint at whatever skill the Lumberjanes would have to make use of next. For readers who have the patience, I recommend reading the tiny script from the manual. So. Funny.
11. While the adventures themselves are rather unique in the way they are handled, they often refer (and/or poke fun) at the pop culture media/icon they are inspired by:
12. Have I mentioned Mal and Molly? I know I’ve mentioned them separately but have I mentioned them together? Because they are so cute and so supportive of each other.
13. As it turns out, knowing how to make a friendship bracelet is a highly useful, life-saving skill. Don’t you want to find out how? *grabs you by the shoulders* Don’t. You.
14. The thing that will best convince you probably are the random dinosaurs that happen. Yes. They are very important. Especially where Ripley is concerned:
15. Okay, fine, I lied. Friendship is the most important. Watching the Lumberjanes interact with each other (and with Jen) is perhaps the best thing about this series. And yeah, it’s not like friendship is a unique concept but in Lumberjanes it means so much and is so much of the story that it is the defining aspect of these books. In the end, it’s all about FRIENDSHIP TO THE MAX!