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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

The Arrival Book Review

The Arrival

Written by Shaun Tan
Number of pages: 128

Average Rating: 4.32/5 stars
My Rating: 4/5 stars

Published: October 12, 2007
Read in April 2016

Summary according to Goodreads

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. 

My Thoughts

This was an amazing and unique reading experience, and I am very happy that I picked this book up. This entire novel was told through art, and there were no words whatsoever. This structure made it a very quick read, but allowed the reader to step deeper into the story. It is in the reader's hands to determine how the plot is unfolding, through their personal depiction of the artwork. It took me a few pages before I figured out why this man was leaving, and the mysterious creatures he met along the way. It is a more sci-fi dystopian novel, but is very easy to follow along with. 

I found it outstanding how this author was able to bring the story of an immigrant to this media, and express it in a very interesting and creative way. Overall, I was blown away by this novel, both from the art and the plot. If there are other novels done in this format I will definitely be picking them up in the future. 

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