Art Spiegelman’s Maus is probably the best graphic novel I’ve ever read. Growing up my Dad would take my brother and I to the library and we would pick out a collection to bring home. Sometimes I’d bring home collections of Calvin and Hobbes or Garfield. I remember crawling into my Dad’s lap while he would read Superman and Batman comics, but never before had we brought home a “comic” like this.
I can appreciate this book for what it is. It’s craft-fully put together that offers humor within a very serious setting. I enjoy that Spiegelman uses his father broken english through out his entire book, but what I enjoyed most was that he drew different animals for the different races.
In a comic there aren’t many descriptive words so we have to use the pictures to decipher the details. I hadn’t realized that while reading Maus I was skipping the pictures and reading the conversation; making my own images in my head. Once I noticed I was doing so, I went back and read not only the conversations but the images. This brought a different perspective to light, but also made it harder to read. I can really appreciate something that can make me really read twice and have to stop and think about.
One of my favorite books is Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, this book is over 1000 small pages with smaller words. A very descriptive book, it has taken me a little over 4 years to read and reread and actually get the entire meaning/concept. I bring this up because maybe if it had been more of a graphic narrative, it wouldn’t have taken me so long. 😉