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The Arrival
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Award-winning author/illustrator Shaun Tan brings us a powerful and evocative wordless graphic novel.

About the Author

Shaun Tan is the author and illustrator of The Lost Thing and The Red Tree, both of which have won international awards such as the Honourable Mention in the BolognaRagazzi Prices, were CBCA Honour Books and have been widely translated. Previous books Shaun has illustrated include The Rabbits by John Marsden (CBCA Picture Book of the Year) and with Gary Crew, Memorial (A CBCA Honour Book) and The Viewer (winner of the Crichton Award for illustration). In 2001 Shaun received the 'World Fantasy Best Artist Award' for his body of work.

Reviews

Gr 4 Up-Sepia-toned panels and full spreads mimic a scrapbook design appropriate to this exploration of immigration. After a man leaves his family, fantasy and reality mingle to convey his emotional and physical states. Signs in an invented language help readers identify with his confusion. The search for meaning is fruitful. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

...a remarkable and skilful work of art. -- Nicolette Jones, The Sunday Times This book should be 'read' by adults and children alike. It's astonishing. -- Marilyn Brocklehurst, Norfolk Children's Book Centre With this haunting, wordless sequence about a lonely emigrant in a bewildering city, Tan ! finds in the graphic novel format an ideal outlet for his sublime imagination!. few will remain unaffected by this timeless stunner. -- Publishers Weekly Filled with both subtlety and grandeur, the book is a unique work that not only fulfills but also expands the potential of its form. -- Booklist !an unashamed paean to the immigrant's spirit, tenacity and guts, perfectly crafted for maximum effect. -- Kirkus Reviews Tan's lovingly laid out and masterfully rendered tale about the immigrant experience is a documentary magically told by way of Surrealism. -- Art Spiegelman, author of Maus: A Survivor's Tale The Arrival is an absolute wonder. It's not often you see art of this quality, or a book that's so brave. -- Marjane Satrapi, author of Persepolis and Embroideries Shaun Tan delivers a shockingly imaginative graphic novel that captures the sense of adventure and wonder that surrounds a new arrival on the shores of a shining new city... The Arrival is one of the best graphic novels of the year! -- Jeff Smith, author of Bone Entirely wordless, but brimming with sounds and conversations in foreign tongues, Shaun Tan's book emanates the warmth of faded photographs... -- Craig Thompson, author of Blankets The Arrival is beautiful... The drawings are just so lovely, endlessly detailed and wonderfully strange. And the design of the book, with it's wrinkled pages and stains and broken leather is marvellous. -- Brian Selznick, author of The Invention of Hugo Cabret Anyone who thinks that the graphic novel is no more than a flash-in-the-pan phenomenon, ought to take a look at "The Arrival." This magnificent work not only establishes itself in a major new literary genre but raises the stakes for anyone seriously considering working in it. -- David Small, Caldecott Medalist for So You Want To Be President? Shaun Tan's artwork creates a fantastical, hauntingly familiar atmosphere. A strange, moving, and beautiful story. -- Jon J Muth, author of Zen Shorts and illustrator of Sandman Shaun Tan's The Arrival may be the most brilliant book of the year' -- School Library journal This book should be 'read' by adults and children alike. It's astonishing. -- Bookseller It will fascinate and occupy adults and children alike -- The Observer A powerful, at times harrowing read, Tan's creation is a major achievement. -- Books for Keeps The reader's experience, as he or she tries to make sense of the unfamiliar scenes and strange images, parallels that of the emigrant, striving to understand without the aid of language. This extraordinarily accomplished pieces of storytelling can be read and understood on many different levels. -- The Guardian The surreal, sepia illustrations in th is remarkable book invite repeated study. Strangely beautiful and frightening, you can spend hours searching for hidden meanings and extra stories. -- Carousel

With this haunting, wordless sequence about a lonely emigrant in a bewildering city, Tan (The Lost Thing) finds in the graphic novel format an ideal outlet for his sublime imagination. Via pencil illustrations that resemble sepia photographs or film cels, Tan depicts a man's poignant departure from his wife and daughter. Stark stone houses, treeless streets and rustic kitchen appliances imply past eras-the man leaves home via an outmoded locomotive and steamship-but strange visuals reveal this is not our everyday world. Shadowy dragon tails trawl the sky of the man's homeland, suggesting pogrom or famine, and when he arrives at an Ellis Island-style port (the endpapers depict passport photos of multicultural travelers), his documents are stamped with cryptic symbols. He gets aboard an unmanned hot-air balloon that delivers him to a vast metropolis with unfamiliar customs and bizarre technologies (imagine, perhaps, a Gehry-designed city). Tan offers no written explanations on this foreign space, so readers fully grasp the man's confusion when he lands a job pasting posters, then hangs them upside-down until his employer corrects him. Readers also understand his empathy for other exiles (each with their tragic stories of immigration) and with a friendly family that invites him to a meal of the local produce, which resembles exotic anemonae. In an oddly charming touch, each person has a distinctive animal companion, reminiscent of Philip Pullman's daemons or Hieronymus Bosch's alchemical creations. The man receives his own creature, a creepy-cute white monster with an egg-shaped torso, huge mouth and waving, eel-like tail; initially repulsed, he slowly warms to its amiable disposition. Just as gradually, his melancholy gives way to optimism and community as, despite setbacks, he benefits from the kindness of strangers. Tan adeptly controls the book's pacing and rhythm by alternating a gridlike layout of small panels, which move the action forward, with stirring single- and double-page spreads that invite awestruck pauses. By flawlessly developing nuances of human feeling and establishing the enigmatic setting, he compassionately describes an immigrant's dilemma. Nearly all readers will be able to relate-either through personal or ancestral experience-to the difficulties of starting over, be it in another country, city, or community. And few will remain unaffected by this timeless stunner. Ages 12-up. (Oct.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

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