THE ARRIVAL by Shaun Tan should be next to the definition of graphic novel in any reference book. This wordless book tells of the arrival of an immigrant to his new country. Everything is strange; people do not understand his language; he cannot understand others either. He longs for his family to come and join him. This might seem a bit mundane in the retelling. How can words capture the images Tan has created to convey the EVERYMAN immigrant experience? The sepia toned illustrations shimmer, hovering between the reality of the new world experiences to the newly arrived and the almost surrealistic surroundings that represent how newcomers might view a foreign country. As the great-grandchild of immigrants on both sides of the family, I can somehow glimpse how America must have seen to my relatives upon arrival. While the book "reads" quickly, it is one that must be viewed over and over again in order to truly capture (split infinitive, I know) all that is contained on each and every page. WOW!
Alas, the cover is not available online yet, so I will have to wait until I get back home to scan it.