Friday, March 02, 2007

Maus: A Survivor's Tale: My Father Bleeds History and Here My Troubles Began by Art Spiegelman

I first heard of this work when Susie blogged about it. Shortly thereafter I was in a book buying frenzy at our local bookstore (which was recently saved from the developers but that's another story) so I went looking for and bought it.

Since this is nonfiction, it can't rightly be called a graphic novel. I'm not sure what the correct term is. Graphic book?

Anyhow, either way, it's an interesting concept. It's very efficient. As I started it, I thought about all of the narrative with which the author didn't need to bother. Not being much of a comic book reader, I found at first that I was ignoring the artwork, focusing on the verbiage instead. After a short period of consciously forcing myself to both read and look, it became more habitual.

The books were very effective at conveying the slow yet inexorable march towards the Final Solution. The troubled father-son relationship and the comparisons between Vladek and other survivors provided a perspective on the post-war repercussions and fall-0ut.

I would have liked a more satisfying resolution of Vladek and Art's relationship but then it wouldn't have been nonfiction, would it?

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