The immigration story is universal and eternal. Shaun Tan's The Arrival tells that story in sepia-toned drawings and completely without words. The worlds Tan creates are at once utterly fanciful and utterly familiar.
A man leaves his wife and child, boards a steamer ship, and arrives at immigration in a new country. Lost, alone, and confused, the man slowly learns to cope and find a job. He makes friends and listens to their stories. Time passes, and he is finally able to send for his family.
That is the simple narration. The drawings fill in all rest.
This is a book I will look at time and time again. Whether you are living in the same house your ancestors built 500 years ago or you are the first person in your family to have been born in a new country, you will absolutely be amazed by this novel.
All images are from Shaun Tan's website.
Published by HarperCollins, 2007
ISBN 13: 9780439895293
Source: Bought (see review policy)