Anomalist Books - Go to home page Anomalist Logo - Go to homepage
NewsCatalogComing SoonBookstoreAbout Us


Shadow Cats
The Black Panthers of North America

by Michael Mayes

Trade Paperback, 240 Pages, 50 Illustrations

$24.00, ISBN: 978-1-938398-90-2

Genre(s): Cryptozoology


For generations residents from coast to coast have reported encounters with large, black, long-tailed cats. These black panthers have left a trail of dead livestock and confused witnesses in their wake. These are animal that are not supposed to exist; animals that are not recognized by science. Despite the reluctance of wildlife officials to accept the reality of these cryptid cats, anomalous tracks continue to appear, pets and farm animals continue to disappear, and sightings continue to be reported.

In this full color book, Michael Mayes examines historical sightings, interviews
contemporary witnesses and big cat experts, sorts through a host of
intriguing photographs, and takes a close look at the potential suspects in
one of America’s most enduring unsolved mysteries. What are the shadow
cats that haunt the woods, bottomlands, and waterways of our country?
What are the black panthers of North America?

About the Author:

MICHAEL MAYES has investigated, for the past 15 years, sightings of both out-of-place known animals and those that may, or may not, exist. He has appeared on numerous podcasts and radio programs, and on The Lowe Files on the A&E network. Michael blogs at the Texas Cryptid Hunter and is author of the illustrated children’s book, Patty: A Sasquatch Story.

Foreword by Dr. Angelo Capparella
Author’s Note
Chapter 1 – A Matter of Semantics
Chapter 2 – Historical Accounts and Folklore
Chapter 3 – Contemporary Black Panther Accounts
Chapter 4 – Is There Enough Suitable Habitat?
Chapter 5 – Zeroing In
Chapter 6 – The Suspects: Jaguar
Chapter 7 – The Suspects: Cougar
Chapter 8 – The Suspects: Jaguarundi
Chapter 9 – The Suspects: Giant Feral Cats
Chapter 10 – The Suspects: Escaped Exotics
Chapter 11 – The Science Behind Melanism
Chapter 12 – Photographic Evidence
Chapter 13 – The Texas Hair Samples
Chapter 14 – The Experts Weigh in
Chapter 15 – What to Make of it All
Sightings Appendix
References and Citations
About the Author

Order the print book from:

In the US:
Outside the US:

In the US, get the eBook instantly from:


This ebook is also available for Kobo eReaders, for the Nook in the UK, and for the Kindle, iPad, and iPhone in many countries around the world.

What they're saying:

“Mayes brings a refreshingly scientific and analytical perspective to the gathering of extensive data and the assessment of large black cat sightings...this book will be of interest to academic zoologists as well as their cousins in cryptozoology.” — Angelo Capparella, Ph.D., Illinois State University

"This is one of the best studies of the ... phenomenon in the United States that I have read...You too can learn a great deal from Mayes’ investigative techniques, his approach to the witnesses, and his careful analyses of the photographic evidence. Shadow Cats is a very good, solid study undertaken by a man with a deep enthusiasm for his subject-matter." — Nick Redfern, Mysterious Universe

"Mayes deserved congratulations for this bringing this book to print...there is no comprehensive volume on this topic so it deserved to be tackled...Mayes has a hair sample from a reported car collision but can’t get any experts willing to examine it. This is a shame. I do hope someone will step up and take a look...[the book] adopted a logical progression that was natural and comprehensible – exactly the approach that should be used to communicate to a lay audience...This volume usefully fills a niche in modern cryptozoological literature."  — Sharon Hill, "Big black cat of the Southern U.S. get their own book"

"It's a hard-to-put-down investigation of the black panther mystery.  Two paws up!" — Sean Whitley, director of the documentary Southern Fried Bigfoot

“…this is an intriguing book. Though modest in scope, it is detailed in the particulars…the author keeps our hopes up by encouraging us to carry our cameras, just in case. You could be the one to document a previously unknown species of cat.” — Brett Taylor, Fortean Times

"This is one of the only books I know of that examines the North American black panther mystery as a whole, and it is an excellent resource to those interested in the subject." — Tyler Houck, Tyler's CryptoZoo

"In this very interesting book, [Michael Mayes] admits that, according to mainstream science, there is no such animal, but in turn he gives vast information and data to the contrary...There are a great number of personal interviews, newspaper accounts, charts/maps and colour photographs in the book...The data the author has gathered is prolific... I was rather sceptical when I first started reading this book but I feel I am becoming a convert! exciting and worthwhile read." — Gerry Russell, Magonia

"...the book is a compelling, confounding and comprehensive look at a phenomenon that captures the imagination and deserves more serious consideration." — Jeremy D. Wells, Grayson • Olive Hill Quarterly


We publish both print and digital books devoted exclusively to UFOs, Bigfoot, the paranormal, and other unexplained mysteries.

News | Catalog | Coming Soon | Bookstore | About Us | Contact