Saturday, May 16, 2015

Maus Volume I 
By Art Spiegelman
Published: November 1, 1991
Publisher: Pantheon Books
Pages: 159

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A story of a Jewish survivor of Hitler's Europe and his son, a cartoonist who tries to come to terms with his father's story and history itself.

Maus Volume II
By Art Spiegelman
Published: Septemeber 1992
Publisher: Pantheon Books
Pages: 136
ISBN: 0679729771
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Acclaimed as a quiet triumph and a brutally moving work of art, the first volume of Art Spieglman's Maus introduced readers to Vladek Spiegleman, a Jewish survivor of Hitler's Europe, and his son, a cartoonist trying to come to terms with his father, his father's terrifying story, and History itself. Its form, the cartoon (the Nazis are cats, the Jews mice), succeeds perfectly in shocking us out of any lingering sense of familiararity with the events described, approaching, as it does, the unspeakable through the diminutive.

This second volume, subtitled And Here My Troubles Began, moves us from the barracks of Auschwitz to the bungalows of the Catskills. Genuinely tragic and comic by turns, it attains a complexity of theme and a precision of thought new to comics and rare in any medium. Maus ties together two powerful stories: Vladek's harrowing tale of survival against all odds, delineating the paradox of daily life in the death camps, and the author's account of his tortured relationship with his aging father. At every level this is the ultimate survivor's tale - and that too of the children who somehow survive even the survivors.

My Review:
Let me start off by saving I loved this graphic novel series. I loved the art style and the writing style. Art Spiegelman tells the story of the second world war, putting emphasis on the Holocaust, through the eyes of his father who is a survivor of the Holocaust. He portrays the different nationalities through different animals. The Jewish people being Mice, the German being Cats, the Polish being Pigs, the French being Frogs and the Americans being Dogs. I really liked the way this was done.  It shines a new light on the way we see how things were done, specifically the German with the Jews and the Americans with the Germans. Cats hunt mice, Dogs hunt cats. It was very educational while still being entertaining. At times I laughed and at times I cried. This series had strong emotions all the way through and a strong message. I may never fully understand what the people went through with the Holocaust but at least now I can stay I know more than I did. I recommend this series to anymore who likes history or just wants to understand the past a little bit more.

My Rating:

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