This is the story of Mino, an 11-year-old boy who becomes a Piepel at Auschwitz. A Piepel is a boy literally fattened for purposes of sodomy. His tale is told in terms of such flagrant pathos that the whole center of the novel melts into a long wash of sentimentality, flecked with details of the depravities Mino undergoes. During the story the camp structure is outlined generally; modes of gassing and cremation are pictured; a great deal of bestiality is described; and little hope is held out for man's nature. Much of the detail has authority but its value is lost in the extremes of the author's emotionalism which can be partially excused on the grounds that he experienced much of this. Unfortunately, however, as literature, the account is the apotheosis of the title.