As a child, I remember reading my older brother’s collection of comics like X-Men, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Batman and Superman. But I have never ventured on graphic novels before and Maus I is my very first.
Maus I follows Vladek Spiegelman’s life before and during World War II. It is a one-of-a-kind memoir of a man’s suffering and several escape from death. He is deeply scarred as a result of these experiences but nevertheless boldly strong.
One of the things that caught my interest are the characters. Each race is a different kind of animal. The Jews were depicted as mice and Germans as cats. And then there were the “mice” pretending to be pigs (Poles). They put on masks to hide themselves to survive. I really think this was a brilliant idea by the author, Art Spiegelman.
The final chapter was The Mouse Trap where metaphorically, it referred to the deception of Vladek and his wife Anja which lead to their capture and imprisonment in Auschwitz.
This is a powerful and incredible graphic novel, a classic piece of writing and illustrations and I really liked the way of storytelling, it was so natural. Highly recommended!
“Maybe your father needed to show that he was always right – that he could always survive – because he felt guilty about surviving.”
“Disaster is my muse.”
“To die, it’s easy. But you have to struggle for life.”