Throughout her life, illustrator Miriam Katin heard vague references to episodes related to “the war.” But she had little memory of her and her mother’s escape from Budapest in 1944, or of what followed. She was just two years old when they fled.

Nearly 60 years later, Katin decided to find out what happened. Culled from her mother’s memories and her own hazy recollections, Katin’s We Are On Our Own is part children’s book, part graphic novel, and part memoir. She discusses the process of creating this work, her mother’s resistance to the project, and the Art Spiegelman factor.