Li'l Jinx, a classic Archie back-up character. I loved the first volume, and this one is a worthwhile follow-up. The plot revolves around three major points: Jinx is having a tough time with her mother, there are baseball/softball tryouts, and there is a big dance coming up. Jinx hardly seems to see her mom, who is divorced from her father, because she works so much, and this absence is wearing on her. Part of the reason why is that her mom has a huge issue to talk about with her, and (SPOILER COMING) she does not know exactly how to broach the issue that she is a lesbian with her daughter. I appreciated how well, sensitively, and realistically this whole conversation played out in the course of the book. Not everyone was OK with the situation, and they, the children and the adults, have multiple reactions. There were no pat answers, and in the end I liked how the various characters reacted to each other.
This book was created by the same team as book one. Writer J. Torres has created various wonderful comics in the past, including the autobiographical The Copybook Tales, adventure stories starring Alison Dare, and other comics for the big two comics companies. Eisner Award-winning artist Rick Burchett is known for his work on Batman and Superman Adventures. Inker Terry Austin
has worked with almost every major artist at
every big company and is probably best known for his run on Uncanny X-Men. Their artistic collaboration is expert, accomplished, and it suits the tenor and tone of the story well.
All of the reviews I have read of this book have been complimentary. John Hogan wrote, "Everything plays out in a realistic manner without ever condescending to
the reader, and Torres deserves credit for never missing a beat with
the humor and levity that define these stories." Win Wiacek offered this praise, "Compellingly funny, gently heart-warming and deftly understated, this is
book that will certainly resonate with kids and parents, offering
genuine human interactions rather than manufactured atom-powered
fistfights to hold your attention." Brian Cronin summed up his review, "It’s a great comic work and I hope Archie keeps making ‘em." Sadly, I have to say they have not yet offered another follow-up.
Jinx: Little Miss Steps was published by Archie. Comic Book Resources offers a preview here.