Filled with the kind of magical thinking that powers childhood—where the unknown is exciting and terrifying in equal measures—and told with a confidence that dares you to keep up, it’s unlike anything else you’ll read this month and all the better for it. A triumph.Wired
By Brecht Evans. Published by Drawn & Quarterly.
Hardcover, 120 pages, Colour, 2014.
"EVENS IS THE FINEST AMBASSADOR FOR BELGIAN ILLUSTRATION SINCE HERGÉ." --THE GUARDIAN
Brecht Evens, the award-winning author of The Wrong Place and The Making Of, returns with an unsettling graphic novel about a little girl and her imaginary feline companion. Iconoclastic in his cartooning and page layouts, subtle in his plotting, and deft in his capturing of the human experience, Evens has crafted a tangled, dark masterwork.
Christine lives in a big house with her father and her cat, Lucy. When Lucy gets sick and dies, Christine is devastated. But alone in her room, something special happens: a panther pops out of her dresser drawer and begins to tell her stories of distant Pantherland, where he is the crown prince.
A shape-shifter who tells Christine anything she wants to hear, Panther begins taking over Christine's life, alienating her from her other toys and friends. As Christine's world spirals out of control, so does the world Panther has created for her. Panther is a chilling voyage into the shadowy corners of the human psyche. The Drawn & Quarterly edition of Panther is an extended "director's cut," featuring additional material not included in the original book.
Praise for Panther
Panther [is] one of the most beautiful and disturbing narratives of childhood ever produced in the comics medium.Vulture
Brecht Evens' Panther is undeniably one of the standout releases so far this year, blending astonishing watercolour art and an increasingly menacing tone.The Quietus
Brecht Evens manages to dream up the same kind of menacing, seductive hocus-pocus that made kid-lit curmudgeons Maurice Sendak or Roald Dahl so beloved.The Globe and Mail
A brilliant book, full of wonder both delightful and malicious, Evens has created a masterpiece.The Comics Journal
A dark fairy tale filled with troubling implications and haunting illustrations.Publishers Weekly
[Brecht’s] pages shine bright with color, almost floral in its abundance, and they rarely use panels. But they’re not just beautiful. The mind at work here thinks about less obvious ways of achieving truths.Paste
Evens illustrates the story with the panel-less flow of a picture book, and colorfully painted drawings erupt into full-page, cubist abstraction when events in the story get out of handMental Floss
... in Panther, [Even's has] conjured up one of the great characters of contemporary comics.Creative Review
Figures, shadows and objects overlap as the worlds of the living and the dead coalesce; the author’s lush narrative style allows us to marvel at these apparitions and fantasies, all the while seeing past them and reading the story beneath.Broken Pencil
A chilling twist on a little girl’s imaginary friend… [Panther]spotlights Evens’ immense range of character expressions as well as his strong understanding of how to use color to intensify those numerous emotional beats.AV Club