Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Blacksad (Blacksad, #1-3)” as Want to Read:
Blacksad (Blacksad, #1-3)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


(Blacksad #1-3)

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  10,575 ratings  ·  886 reviews
Private investigator John Blacksad is up to his feline ears in mystery, digging into the backstories behind murders, child abductions, and nuclear secrets. Guarnido's sumptuously painted pages and rich cinematic style bring the world of 1950s America to vibrant life, with Canales weaving in fascinating tales of conspiracy, racial tension, and the "red scare" Communist witc ...more
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published June 22nd 2010 by Dark Horse Originals (first published 2006)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Blacksad, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Blacksad

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.32  · 
Rating details
 ·  10,575 ratings  ·  886 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Blacksad (Blacksad, #1-3)
Apr 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
If it`s true that cats have nine lives, then John Blacksad must have a few dozen.

A new world, which is now almost like a zoo... Private investigator John Blacksad has a job to do, which is more than just being a detective.

With interesting adventures and beautiful artwork, this graphic novel is not-to-be-missed.
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List



I LOVED THIS BOOK! So the first comic in the book is called:


One of John Blacksad's old flames was found dead, her name was Natalia. At one time they were very happy together.


But.. Chief Smirnov doesn't want John to get involved, he doesn't listen of course and sets out to find out what happened. He starts by asking some old friends etc.


When the story gets more tricky, the chief tells John to get more involved in such a good way.
Apr 24, 2016 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Hellen by: Harry
Shelves: graphic-novels
Okay, Blacksad.

So, I recommend this book for people who love beautifully drawn graphic novels. I also recommend it for people who love andromorphism. And I recommend it to people who'd like a visual example of what's problematic about the way women and men are portrayed.

Now I'll start with what I liked about this book, just to get it out of the way. The art. The aht. It's wonderful. I think it may be my all-time favorite. The stories aren't bad either. Read this a while back, can't say anything
Sean Gibson
Jun 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
I’ve always had a thing for anthropomorphic animals. Not a perverted thing, mind you—though that Cheetara chick from Thundercats was pretty smoking hot…no, no; I’m not even going to pretend on that one. That’s just weird, for two reasons (well, two amongst many, really): 1) she’s a cartoon character in a show where dialogue moves about as fast as my brain when it’s trying to figure out exactly what the hell a cosine is; and 2) she’s a creepy person/cheetah hybrid who probably has strange lady pa ...more
Feb 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites

1 part Walt Disney, 2 parts Raymond Chandler, and 3 parts Kentucky Bourbon. Blacksad is so good I’m definitely going back for a 2nd round. Almost took a pass on this one. Being a father, I’ve read my fair share of children’s books and when I saw that all the characters are animals I almost put this one back on the shelf. Stupid because this shit is GREAT and it’s NO fuckin’ kid’s book.


Blacksad smacks of old school noir at its finest. This one's neck deep in double crosses, femme fatales, shitt
Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Apr 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015, comics

re-read to refresh my memory, in anticipation of volume 5


I am glad to report that the series has lost none of it’s initial appeal, six year after I first followed private investigator John Blacksad through the dark alleyways and rundown tenements of his antropomorphic version of “Sin City”. A black-furred brawling tomcat in a Humprey Bogart trenchcoat is pursuing the murderers of his former flame, a curvaceous feline movie star with a taste for the night life of the city. On one side of t
Seth T.
Aug 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
John Blacksad is a cat. Or, at least, he is cattish. And not like kitty-cattish but big-cattish. He's dark and comely, like Bagheera. Maybe he's sort of a pantherish guy. And that's the thing. For all his cattishness or pantherishness, he's definitely a guy—a tough guy with brimfuls of moxie and the good sense to wear a hat that matches his attire.

Blacksad by Juan Díaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido

I'm not particularly well-schooled in the history of literally anthropomorphized animals (or are they zoomorphized humans?). There may be some long an
Aug 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is the English edition - which in fact contains the first three volumes in one (Blacksad, Artic nation & Red Soul)

There are many things I could say about this book but I think the number of accolades and awards this book has collected both in the English version and its original French format speak far more. The quality and attention to details I think are astonishing and I wonder how long each image let alone the story took to design and assemble.

The story is also highly engrossing - set
Dec 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of hard-boiled detective mysteries
This volume collects the first three graphic novels in the award-winning Blacksad series, which follows the adventures of cool cat private detective John Blacksad as he navigates the 1950's; fighting crime, righting wrongs, and bedding down some sexy pussycats while he's at it. It reads like the classic hard-boiled tales of Chandler, Hammet, and Spillane, with many familiar genre conventions on display.

In the debut story, Somewhere Within The Shadows , John investigates the violent death of a
William Thomas
Jul 08, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A recommendation from Stan Lee on the cover. A private-eye packing heat and nine lives. I figured I'd give it a try.

Typically, anthropomorphism in stories makes my stomach turn. I find it hard to swallow outside of Aesop's fables, Disney movies or general mythology. I thinks it's cheesy, not experimental. There is hardly ever a time when the characters in those stories are animals for any specific purpose. They mainly act like humans, talk like humans, walk like humans. Their animal traits are
'Fables of the Flying City' is on hiatus. Objectively, I know this is for a very good reason - like, say, Jared Axelrod writing all the episodes of the next season so that there's no delay in them being released. Subjectively, I want more podcast NOW PLEASE.

So it's a good thing that while the hiatus is going on, Axelrod is doing another sort of podcast, with the assistance of a graphic novel artist. They're calling it 'Jared and Steven Like Comics', and it's released two reviews of graphic novel
Dave Schaafsma
Dec 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gn-crime
Noir stories that deal with contemporary issues like racism, the Holocaust,etc, along the way.... the stories are solid, interesting, compelling, if you like crime stories... but the twist is that these are animals dressed as humans as main characters.... Given THAT change, there isn't that much about the fact that they are animals that fundamentally changes the pretty standard plot structure. But the real greatness of this work is the gorgeous art, each frame a sumptuous painting. Really fine w ...more
Guarnido and Canales Create the Best European Comic of the 'New' Millennium

Artist Juanjo Guarnido met writer Juan Diaz Canales while both men worked as key artists and conceptual designers at Disney's now defunct Animation Studio in Spain. Canales makes the transition from artist to writer amazingly well; the sheer brilliance of Guarnido's artwork in Blacksad make it easy to miss just how damn good the plotting and dialogue are, capturing the mood and culture of cold-war America as the grip of
Aug 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The rating is mostly for the art that is stunning, original and its own storyteller. John Blacksad almost doesn't need the writing to be a compelling PI hero.

The writing is good too and the stories are among the coolest hardboiled PI comics. The world is so atmosphere rich, alive and the charcters are so humanlike.

The first story is lightwight and simple PI story but the other two are stronger, smarter and makes me want more, much more of Blacksad and his world.
Elena C.
Not even Juanjo Guarnido's stunningly beautiful art (and it really is gorgeous) can make up for this load of trite noir-esque cliches and ridiculous, cheesy dialogues. Well, all right: that the story has nothing new to add to the noir genre wouldn't be that big of a deal, per se. But Blacksad also gleefully basks in its more problematic tropes: so, for example, women only come in *one flavor, the Sexy Damsel in Distress. That she's dead or alive matters very little, as the SDiD has absolutely no ...more
Anthony Vacca
Jun 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
After an old flame is found murdered, private eye John Blacksad looks into the last few months of her life only to find himself stalked by a slick hitman who wants to keep our hero away from his wealthy employer.

When a little girl goes missing, the only person who seems to care is an elderly neighbor who hires Blacksad to find the girl and bring her home. The only trouble is that between him and her is a white supremacist cult, an aging millionaire and his mentally handicapped son, a corrupt pol
Jun 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Comparable in terms of quality to Criminal, Goldfish and Stumptown and I can't wait to read the rest of the series. ...more
Jesse A
Mar 08, 2017 rated it liked it
Not too shabby detective/noir story where all the characters are animals for whatever reason. 3.5 stars.
Rory Wilding
May 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"A jungle where it's survival of the fittest—where people act like animals."

In the world of Blacksad, the film noir-styled stories are set in late 1950s America, where all of the characters are anthropomorphic animals, and like all black cats, John Blacksad is one of bad luck.

Originally published by French publisher Dargaud, this comic album series by Spanish authors Juan Díaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido are telling three traditional detective stories in the style of Philip Marlowe and Raymond
Aug 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
High quality graphic novel with excellent illustrations. I love that the characters are all animal-people. Great expressive faces by illustrator, Juanjo Guarnido. Black tomcat John Blacksad is a detective, and the three stories bound in this volume address societal issues, such as rich vs. poor (greed), racism, and facism/communism, all couched in a crime format. Really looking forward to reading the next two stories. 4.5 stars.
I ended up loving this book. I'm not sure where I found out about this, but the art sold me. The art in Blacksad is breathtaking, maybe some of the best in the biz. I liked the anthropomorphic style too. Kind of reminded me of Usagi Yojimbo, but darker and more animal references. I have two more books to finish to claim a favorite story, but you can kind of read these separate, but I wouldn't really suggest that because there are hints to other books as the series progresses. ...more
Jan 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: other-comics
Well, that was something else.

Blacksad is a remarkably well written and sumptuously rendered collection of detective noir stories. Created by Spanish writer Juan Diaz Canales and artist Juanjo Guarnido, the series is orignally published in French and Spanish, before being translated into other languages. Due to the translation process and the hand-painted artwork there have been a few years between each book, but fortunately Dark Horse Comics have collected the first three stories (each around s
Melania 🍒

|| The read harder challenge 2018 - A comic that isn’t published by Marvel, DC or Image ||
Althea J.
Mar 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Were it not for the Panels Read Harder Challenge task, "Read a comic book starring anthropomorphic animals," I would not have picked up this book and I would've missed out on the brilliance that is Blacksad.

This is one cinematic graphic novel - the pacing, the shots, the tightly woven noir crime tales.

(Link to image)

And the way Guarnido uses animals to embody the characterization is brilliant. Even with the background characters, he nails it. I get a sense of who that koala-man is without him n
Pretty good and original, but too damn short and quickly resolved.
Jun 12, 2015 rated it did not like it
This book collects the first of the three "episodes" of the Blacksad graphic novels/comics/whatever. It's basically a neo-noir thing taking in place in the 50s but everyone's talking animals. The first one's a pretty generic noir thing (murder, corrupt officials, gangsters, lots of smoking). The second one deals with race and the Klan and stuff and the third one deals with the Red Scare. I don't think the authors handled either topic particularly well. The plots are also pretty ridiculous with l ...more
Sep 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
It's good. Very good. The writing and art together really drew me into the story and world like only the best writers are able to accomplish. It's a hard world with some mature elements that makes this one unsuitable for the kids but it never feels like it's including adult situations just because the author can.

The art is fantastic and it's so smooth you have to stop and force yourself to stare at it sometimes to recognize just how detailed it really is. It evokes an older noir past and create
Jan 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This isn't Disney.

For which we should all be very thankful.

First, let me say that the artwork is stunning, in particular how certain real figures were shown as characters in this book.

But the thing, the real thing, is the plot. Blacksad is a private detective whose first tale involes solving the murder of his former girlfriend. The best part, however, is the second story in this book, with the last running a close second.

The second story is a look at race as told by the animal figures that inhab
Feb 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Blacksad is a true jewel of European comics. And there is a lot to love about it. Beside story (or rather stories), which is a brilliant noir-ish detective adventure with calm pace, but still very thrilling. the take on the fifties is significantly better than most comics, playing that era, before and after. And there are animals instead to people to better illustrate the points, but it's still believable because Canales and Guarnido did an excellent job to capture American fifties in all its fo ...more
Blacksad is a hardboiled mystery with anthropomorphic characters. This edition collects Blacksad #1-3, which are all standalone stories that can be read in mostly* any order.

The mysteries themselves are fairly standard fare. There's a kidnapping and a couple of of murders, with the animal kingdom's version of the KKK and some McCarthyism adding flavor. The writing and characters are fitting to the genre. Nothing spectacular, but they are what you want from hardboiled fiction. Bitter, violent, a
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Daytripper
  • Pulp
  • Pride of Baghdad
  • Asterios Polyp
  • The Incal
  • Journalism
  • Harrow County: Library Edition Volume 1
  • Sweet Tooth, Volume 1: Out of the Deep Woods
  • 300
  • Kill or Be Killed
  • Criminal, Vol. 1: Coward
  • 100 Bullets: The Deluxe Edition Book IV
  • Gideon Falls, Vol. 4: The Pentoculus
  • Reckless
  • Undiscovered Country, Vol. 2: Unity
  • Lonesome Days, Savage Nights
  • Megahex
  • The Question: The Deaths of Vic Sage
See similar books…
Juan Díaz Canales is a Spanish comics artist and an animated film director, known as the co-creator of Blacksad.

Other books in the series

Blacksad (5 books)
  • Blacksad (Blacksad, #1)
  • Arctic-Nation (Blacksad, #2)
  • Âme rouge (Blacksad, #3)
  • L'Enfer, le silence (Blacksad, #4)
  • Amarillo (Blacksad, #5)

Related Articles

We asked Alice Bolin, author of Dead Girls: Essays on Surviving an American Obsession, and journalist-turned-crime novelist Laura...
99 likes · 49 comments