Friday, June 8, 2012

Arrival/ by Shaun Tan

A wordless graphic novel narrates a story of an immigrant who left his family behind and sailed off to make a new life in a strange and unfamiliar land. Through abundant monochromatic illustrations the author succeeds in capturing the state of loneliness and confusion that the nameless man feels and experiences while drifting through the unknown land where everything is strikingly different and foreign: alphabet, pets and transportation. At first, the immigrant notices only oddness of landscape, but eventually he starts making friends among the people who are like him and listens to their life stories. Overall, the depicting style of this novel is very dark, with quite a few fantastical elements that only deepen the sense of “being out of place”. Most of the illustrations are a sequence of squares, but the author also uses whole page techniques to depict major scenes of battles or to present the city’s landscape. Readers will be delighted to view the photographs of real immigrants on the endpapers

Ksenia R

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