Jean-Baptiste Poulain has been hired by the Baron of Brac to tutor his son. When the young teacher arrives on the island off the coast of Brittany, he’s immediately struck by how much the population seems to both hate and fear their lord. Which doesn’t stop the locals from going after the aristocrat’s people. Jean-Baptiste is brutally attacked – just after Nolwenn, the baron’s son, is found beaten to death…

  • Cinebook, July 2015
  • Script by Fabien Vehlmann
  • Art by Matthieu Bonhomme
  • 48 pages
  • $11.95 USD
  • Order online: IzneoAmazon

A truly wonderful thriller; it takes hold and never lets go.

Perhaps it’s more mystery than thriller: a slow build of events to an interesting reveal and then a tumult of cause and effect. No, that’s a thriller.

Vehlmann gives us an amazing cast of characters, each playing their part as our hero Poulain is buffeted between what he sees and experiences with what he hears and questions. A truly great story has a great villain, and we’re treated well here; I don’t want to spoil anything so we’ll stop there. Just know that as each piece of the puzzle slides into place you’ll be more and more engaged.

Plus I’m a sucker for historical fiction. The environment is fully fleshed out and immersive.

Bonhomme’s art is clean, stylized and full of life and detail. Wonderful facial and body expressions and movements to keep us turning the page. Great costumes and locations, keeping us firmly grounded in the period.

Dense pages of interesting panel layouts, with a slightly changing grid. It’s only 48 pages but the story is dense and well packaged.

Delf’s deft use of colour for mood and environment are key to this excellent story. An overall joy.

Please check out the preview below from Izneo, who provided my digital copy for review.