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The Arrival - Shaun Tan

Hardcover Published: October 2006
ISBN: 9780734406941
Number Of Pages: 128
For Ages: 11+ years old

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A unique 128-page, textless graphic novel, in black, white and sepia, drawing inspiration from tales of migrants in past and recent times.

The central character is a middle-aged man who arrives in a strange new place and tries to find a place to live, a job and a handle on a new language. He encounters many challenges, all described entirely through visual sequences.

The absence of words emphasises the strangeness of the situation and the loneliness experienced by many migrants, but the ending is full of affirmation and hope, when the wife and son the migrant had to leave behind are finally able to join him in their new homeland.

Industry Reviews

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

ISBN: 9780734406941
ISBN-10: 0734406940
Audience: Children
For Ages: 11+ years old
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 128
Published: October 2006
Publisher: Hachette Australia
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 31.3 x 24.0  x 1.4
Weight (kg): 0.91
Edition Number: 1

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Shaun Tan

About the Author


Shaun Tan grew up in the northern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia. In school he became known as the 'good drawer' which partly compensated for always being the shortest kid in every class. He graduated from the University of WA in 1995 with joint honours in Fine Arts and English Literature, and currently works as an artist and author in Melbourne.

Shaun began drawing and painting images for science fiction and horror stories in small-press magazines as a teenager, and has since become best known for illustrated books that deal with social, political and historical subjects through surreal, dream-like imagery. The Rabbits, The Red Tree, Tales from Outer Suburbia, Rules of Summer and the acclaimed wordless novel The Arrival have been widely translated and enjoyed by readers of all ages. Shaun has also worked as a theatre designer, a concept artist for animated films including Pixar's WALL-E, and directed the Academy Award-winning short film The Lost Thing with Passion Pictures Australia. In 2011 he received the presitgious Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, honouring his contribution to international children's literature.

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