This book was highly engrossing. It was like reading a very surreal history book. The “characters” are portrayed as mice (Jews), pigs (Poles), dogs (Americans), and cats (Germans). The author went home to see his father that he has not seen in two years. Remarried and health issues, his father and his new wife clearly not get along, but Spiegelman does not focus on that. He persuaded his father to tell him the story of his life in Poland and the war.
His father, Vladek told his story from before he met his wife, Anja to when he and his wife were sent to the concentration camp Auschwitz. Throughout the book, there were acts of kindness, bravery, and even betrayals as Vladek, his family, and friends navigate through the many mazes of war. In his own way, the author told of his mother’s suicide in Prisoner on Hell Planet. Spiegelman thought his father would have been angry over the comic but his father was quite opposite. Spiegelman wanted to read his mother’s journals that she wrote during the war. His father has burned them all, which made Spiegelman extremely angry.