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A true piece of history through the eyes of a holocaust survivor as told by his son. Dont we all disregard our irrelevant parents until we seek to understand Read full review

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Spiegelman, the author, is a baby-boomer, and both his parents were in Nazi concentration camps. Unfortunately, his mother committed suicide before he had a chance to interview her. We never do find out really why she killed herself, though there are hints that Vladek (Art's father) was too hard on her (psychologically) or that she felt intolerable guilt about the death of her first son as a young boy. This was the author's brother, Richieu. It seems he also died at the hands of the Nazis, though it is not entirely clear that he died this way.
The author did interview his father toward the end of his father's life. And what a story he came up with. A true survivor's tale of what he saw and endured at Auschwitz, while his wife, the author's mother, was most of the time in a separate concentration camp.
Art has cameo appearances by himself, with his wife, and interviewing his father, throughout the story. He visits weekly an old friend of his father's, also a survivor of the camps. The old friend tells him that perhaps he feels some guilt about what his parents had to go through. We all feel guilt, he continues, and the guilt may not end for several generations more.
A lot has changed since those times, but this graphic novel gives a good idea of what transpired in these concentration camps, at least from Vladek's viewpoint. What occurs to me is how cheap Jewish life was considered in those days, and probably not only in those days.
The moral: Yet what was done to the Jews is done to all of us, Jewish or not. The outcome is that all life is cheapened. We may have today enough food, shelter, clothing, and luxuries undreamed of then, but life is still a ghetto, because man hates himself and projects it onto others. Or something like that. Women are different, thank goodness. Unfortunately, they seem to be growing more like men, the wrong direction, I would estimate.
This book will definitely make you think.

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loved it

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Living a scarred life
I had just started learning about graphic novels in English class when I heard about Maus. When I first learned about graphic novels in middle school, I always hated them
because most of these books were very hard to follow, and the plot lines of these stories were usually boring. Now in high school, my English teacher introduced me to Maus, a book so well written by Art Spiegelman that it’s unbelievable how he was able to portray the horrors of the Holocaust through the eyes of mice. It may be that Art Spiegelman got his animal characterizations from George Orwell’s Animal Farm.
When I first saw the cover of Maus, I instantly thought that I was going to despise this book because I was never really a big fan of books where the story was told though talking animals. More importantly, I believed that Art Spiegelman was just going to make a ridicule of the Holocaust, using satire and other literary devices to make fun of the Nazis and Jews, but my assumptions of Maus were completely wrong. After reading the first few chapters of Maus, I immediately fell in love with the novel because Art Spiegelman used his wits and sense of humor to write about true events that occurred during the Holocaust by being creative with his characters, but also tried to draw the reader’s attention to the symbolism behind the animals he used for his story.
Although the book may seem fictional, Art Spiegelman talked about his parent’s experiences before and during the Holocaust, making Maus an autobiography. Maus is a tale about Vladek Spiegelman and his wife, Anja, Art’s parents, who lived and survived anti-Semitic Poland and Hitler’s Holocaust. This graphic novel is written in present tense, starting off in Rego Park, New York in the late 1970s, with the past events retold through Artie and Vladek’s conversations. As I read Maus, it appeared to me that Spiegelman was very subjective, questioning his method of writing, and whether if he should have written about his parent’s experiences during the Holocaust.
Will Vladek be able to handle the effects of being wealthy, and use his intelligence and resourcefulness to save his family from the terrible fate that all Jews suffered during the Holocaust? How can one still have the desire to live after experiencing such gruesome events of the Holocaust? Will Artie and Vladek ever put aside their differences, and fix their strained relationship? Where is Anja’s side of the story? How can you go on with life, knowing that you don’t have a family to support you anymore? Who will beat out all the odds and overcome the brutality, suffering, isolation, and ghastly conditions of the Holocaust?
These are questions that are answered throughout Maus. Maus has been the most fascinating graphic novel that I’ve ever read. With its vivid images, storyline, and literary elements, Maus is a must-read. The images have stayed with me since I started reading Maus, portraying the inhumanity, ruthlessness, and the suffering that all Jews faced during the Holocaust. Like Vladek says in Maus, ”to die, it’s easy…but you have to struggle for life,” all Jews in Europe had to have the will to fight until the very end if they wanted to come out of the Holocaust alive, and taste freedom again.
This is a remarkable graphic novel that combines comedy with real life experiences. While the ending of Maus leaves you hanging and craving for more, Art Spiegelman wants you to remember one important thing. That is to never forget all the innocent lives that were lost during the Holocaust. We must remember all the brave people who died while fighting for their life, and cherish those who thankfully made it out alive during the dark times that Hitler reigned in Europe. We want to learn from our mistakes so history doesn’t repeat itself.

Review: Maus I: A Survivor's Tale: My Father Bleeds History (Maus #1)

User Review  - TOM GRAYSON - Goodreads

It was a amazing to hear a story like this about the Holocaust because the events have enough action to be worthy of a movie, yet it's all real and at times told from the point of view from a person ... Read full review

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