Jinty & Penny 9 May 1981

Jinty cover 11.jpg

(Cover artist: Mario Capaldi)

Jinty was now out of the Mario Capaldi sports covers and into the era of full cover versions of the spot illustrations that Capaldi drew for her text stories that appeared later in 1981. This one is one of my favourites. I find it difficult to take my eyes off it because I just love the surreal, misty, ocean atmosphere. The use of lemon yellow in the background lifts the blues and greys and provides a lightening, yet atmospheric contrast that I just love. it is not surprising that the text story is a ghost story.

“Fancy Free” is one of Jinty‘s more realistic bully stories. Here the star of the show is a bully, Fancy Cole. Fancy is the most difficult pupil in her school, a rebel without a cause, and the only thing she cares about is her freedom. Her problem is that her home life is miserable and unloving. Her mother cares more about bingo than her, the place is a tip, and Fancy longs for her absent father (and to know the reason why he is absent). So often in real life does an unhappy home and lack of decent parenting spill over into bullying and other behaviour problems.

“Diving Belle” is going to extraordinary, dangerous, and even illegal lengths to regain her nerve at high diving. But she continues to do so because something tells her to believe a gypsy woman, who says something vital depends on it. The gypsy woman herself doesn’t quite know what it is yet, but readers may have guessed already.

In “Worlds Apart”, the girls have been force-fed into fatties in a world where everyone is grotesquely fat. In fact, EVERYTHING is fat – even the sparrows! How on earth they manage to fly, we don’t know. But then, exercise is frowned upon in this fat world (the absolute opposite of the next world the girls will encounter). So the fatties are shocked when Ann takes a run. Then everyone is shocked when she drops dead from running because she was too fat for it!

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