(W/A/CA) Willy Linthout. In 2007, after the suicide of his son, Willy Linthout wrote and drew the graphic novel Years of the Elephant, which was nominated for a number of international awards. What We Need to Know is the sequel but uses a wide-angle lens to encompass the entire family, specifically three brothers who each need to cope with their own ghosts. Fortunately, they can consult 'The Book' in emergencies. In that magic reference work, their mother has collected innumerable facts, recipes, and advice, in essence, what we need to know about life.