Cats of the Louvre HC
Publisher: VIZ Media (VIZ Signature imprint)
Release Date: October 2019
Price: $19.99
Creator: Taiyo Matsumoto
Format: 432 pgs., B&W, 6"x8.5", Hardcover
ISBN: 978-1-9747-0708-9
Age Rating: N/A
ICv2 Rating: 4.5 Stars out of 5

This is a beautiful fantasy story set in and around the Louvre museum, and involving cats, art restoration, and several other odd combinations of topics within the story.  The tale’s only weakness, and it’s a minor one, is that sometimes there is no feeling of why something happens in the fantasy parts of the story.

There are multiple styles of artwork in the story.  One style is for normal interactions of people [and cats] in and around the Louvre.  A second is for reproductions of famous paintings.  A third is for the world that the cats inhabit, and that one reminded me of a cartoony re-staging of the Cats musical.  The changes are jarring at first, but once the reader gets used to them, they become a visual clue for what’s going on, although the different styles of anthropomorphic cats are a little weird at times, and a bit distracting.

The story is a moving one about people, cats and other things that don’t quite belong to this world.  It’s also about stumbling across your dreams, after you’ve given up on them, always for perfectly good reasons, of course.

The book’s cover has not one, but three pieces of artwork centering on the same small white cat.  I do wish that the book had included a tiny bit more color art, after seeing the color work on the cover.  Still, teens and adults who like art and/or cats will enjoy this story, even if the fantasy part is a little confusing.

--Nick Smith: Library Technician, Community Services, for the Pasadena Public Library in California.