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The Arrival

Tan, Shaun
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Hachette Australia (Lothian Children’s Books)
Published: October 14, 2014
ISBN: 9780734415868
128 pages, 2-colour

£10.99

The Arrival by Shaun Tan is a wordless “graphic novel” published by Hodder Children’s Books in 2006. The book is 128 pages long and divided into six chapters; it is composed of small, medium, and large panels, and often features pages of full artwork. It features an immigrant’s life in an imaginary world that sometimes vaguely resembles our own. Without the use of dialogue or text, Shaun Tan portrays the experience of a father emigrating to a new land. Tan differentiates The Arrival from children’s picture books, explaining that there’s more emphasis on continuity in texts with multiple frames and panels, and that a “graphic novel” text like his more closely resembles a film making process. Shaun Tan has said he wanted his book to build a kind of empathy in readers: “In Australia, people don’t stop to imagine what it’s like for some of these refugees. They just see them as a problem once they’re here, without thinking about the bigger picture. I don’t expect the book to change anybody’s opinion about things, but if it at least makes them pause to think, I’ll feel as if I’ve succeeded in something

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