Maus book review | Blogmas #13

Posted December 13, 2018 by Jordann @thebookbloglife in 5 star, book reviews / 0 Comments

Maus book review | Blogmas #13The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman
Published by Penguin Books on 2nd October 2003
Genres: Historical Fiction
Pages: 296
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five-stars

Combined for the first time here are Maus I: A Survivor's Tale and Maus II - the complete story of Vladek Spiegelman and his wife, living and surviving in Hitler's Europe. By addressing the horror of the Holocaust through cartoons, the author captures the everyday reality of fear and is able to explore the guilt, relief and extraordinary sensation of survival - and how the children of survivors are in their own way affected by the trials of their parents. A contemporary classic of immeasurable significance.

I have had Maus on my shelf for actual years, I have been meaning to read it from the moment I heard about it. I finished The Tattooist of Auschwitz and thought that it would be a good time to jump into this one. I have to say it’s a completely different feeling than The Tattooist of Auschwitz, which I think is because of the different perspective, for me Maus felt less raw and less emotional but in some way had more of an impact. It probably sounds awful but I couldn’t forget that Maus was a true story with real people that were affected.

I thought the art in this book was outstanding, it was so simple that it didn’t detract from the story line or the character’s emotion. I do think my favourite part of Maus was the way that it was interspersed within the story and the way that modern day was mixed into the past. It gave the story context and brought the events into sharp reality. Plus having the two perspectives and time periods side by side meant that you can see the effects of the events in real times. It was really interesting and also really unique. It was something I had never seen before, and I really enjoyed it. 

I did find some of Art’s reactions although realistic annoying and very unforgiving of his father. I as an outsider had what felt like a better understanding of what was going through his dad’s head at that time. But at the same time it made for a more interesting read especially as it wasn’t all pity and sympathy. It once again reiterated that these were real people and that the emotions in Maus weren’t manufactured fiction. It highlighted for me anyway the struggles that someone growing up with someone who had survived and made it out of the camps.

I would definitely recommend Maus, it was a really good read, the art is absolutely fantastic and I actually learnt a lot about the camps and the politics within them. It will definitely be a reread for sure. 

Have you read Maus? What did you think? Do you have any other recommendations? Let me know!