Lumberjanes: The Moon Is Up
The second Lumberjanes young adult novel, Lumberjanes: The Moon Is Up, is now available, and like the first, Unicorn Power!, as written by Mariko Tamaki, it captures the feel of the series well for fans. (Particularly with the few but significant illustrations by Brooklyn Allen.)
The camp is preparing for Galaxy Wars, a week-long contest involving a scavenger hunt, trivia contest, and obstacle course, all about the planets. That means we also get to see, in this book, Barney and their Zodiac cabin.
Note that the promo for the book made mention of its “focus on Jo, the ingenious inventor of the group who also happens to be trans.” I loved seeing more inside her head, since she’s usually the stable, quiet one, but it’s disappointing to see that there’s nothing in the book itself that makes it clear she’s trans. There are gender-non-specific pronouns and a bit of attention on Mal and Molly together, though.
Instead, Jo’s plot is about being conflicted between further scientific study and staying with her friends at camp. Her best friend April is caught up in the contest, Mal and Molly are working on a music badge, and Ripley is eating tons of pancakes. Plus, cheese is going missing. That’s where the fantasy aspect (required for Lumberjanes) comes in, as an unusual creature (with a science fiction twist) is responsible.
The descriptions create mental pictures of a magical place. There are various statements throughout about how “every day is a great day to be a Lumberjane” and “obstacles do not stand in the way of being an awesome scout” and an emphasis on being well-rounded and having fun. Combined with the dry humor, that makes for an encouraging read. (The publisher provided an advance digital review copy.)