25 Years of Cats and Maus.

Prize-Winning Holocaust Comic writer Art Spiegelman spent 13 years writing and drawing Maus, the comic book that tells (and shows) the story his father, Vladek, a Holocaust survivor, and gave comics something the mainstream could talk about. Like all Jews in the book, Vladek appears as a mouse, while the Nazis are cats. Spiegelman rejected his parents’ aspirations for him to become a dentist and studied cartooning in high school and began drawing professionally at age 16. He has spent much of the intervening 25 years since the publication of Maus further explaining, and in some cases defending, his work. Though he has also been, rightfully, celebrated; winning a Pulitzer Prize in 1992.

Now he revisits his masterpiece from 1986 in an insightful new book MetaMAUS, an account of the books creation and reception, explain himself once and for all, and to answer questions such as what led him to tell his father's story in the first place? Why did he choose to depict the Jews as mice? How could a comic book confront the terror and brutality of the worst atrocity of the twentieth century? Not forgetting, of course, why was it he drew the British as fish? (though we're sort of fine with that).

Spiegelman is well-spoken and insightful, and is one of those rare creators who can talk coherently about his own work and process. His recollections and analysis are complemented by interviews with his wife and children, as well as a transcript of some of his original interviews with his father. MetaMaus is thoroughly illustrated with excerpts from Spiegelman's sketchbook, from the original source materials he used when creating his book, and news clippings and other ephemera from the books' storied history. The book is accompanied by a DVD with about 4GB of video and audio, including the interview that makes up the book, the original interviews with Speigelman's father, and several videos and images of the source material.