Thursday, September 3, 2009

Quickly Went Through: "The Arrival" by Shaun Tan

Quickly Went Through: The Arrival by Shaun Tan, 2006, 9780439895293.

A quick read. This was recommended by someone on the Blue Mountains Library blog. I don't read their blog regularly but sometimes they mention a title that really grabs me. There are a couple others they have mentioned that I still need to get a hold of. She - the gal who did the Tan review - gives a better description than I. But, here is mine anyway.

A story told in pictures about a man who leave his wife and young daughter behind to travel to another country. He brings only a suitcase and at the end of an overseas voyage arrives in a strange and bewildering place. The local alphabet is indecipherable. The maps are bizarre. Even the clocks work with different symbology. Travel is by automatically navigated balloon taxi and the public transit seem to be a floating steamboats.

The man meets several other immigrants who assist him in adjusting to the new place. They each tell their own story of terror and danger in their homelands. In the end the man's wife and child join him. Happy ending with the daughter helping a new immigrant find her way.

A neat look at what immigrants face in a different culture.

LAST NOTE: Tan grew up north of Perth and graduated U. of West Aus. in '95. Hell I may have run into the guy somewhere.

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