Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Arrival by Shaun Tan

The Arrival by Shaun Tan
Published by Lothian Books; October 12, 2007
Hardcover, 128 pages
Borrowed from library

In a heartbreaking parting, a man gives his wife and daughter a last kiss and boards a steamship to cross the ocean. He's embarking on the most painful yet important journey of his life- he's leaving home to build a better future for his family.

Shaun Tan evokes universal aspects of an immigrant's experience through a singular work of the imagination. He does so using brilliantly clear and mesmerizing images. Because the main character can't communicate in words, the book forgoes them too. But while the reader experiences the main character's isolation, he also shares his ultimate joy.

- Description from

Wow. I am completely blown away by this book. I've heard so many positive reviews and this book definitely did not disappoint. It actually EXCEEDED my expectations!

It's tough already to create a great story with words so imagine how hard it must be to create one using ONLY pictures! Yet, Mr. Tan seems to do it so effortlessly. The illustrations (which look more like photos) are breathtaking and tell a gorgeous story of the struggles of a new immigrant. 

While reading, I found the imaginary world Mr. Tan thought up to be spectacular. Yes, it's foreign and unfamiliar but there's something that SEEMS so familiar, even if you have never experienced this. 

There are really, truly no words to describe how awesome this book is. Everything flows so wonderfully! I suggest everyone go out right THIS SECOND and get themselves The Arrival. Yes, it's a picture book but anyone can read. And if you're not interested in the story, simply marvel at the illustrations.

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