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4.5  ·  Rating Details ·  1,256 Ratings  ·  108 Reviews
“Years ago we had a foreign exchange student come to live with us. We found it very difficult to pronounce his name correctly, but he didn’t mind. He told us to just call him ‘Eric’.”

As charming as he is curious, by the end of his stay this intriguing house guest will capture your heart. This story is from Shaun Tan’s award-winning collection Tales from Outer Suburbia.
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published April 1st 2010 by Allen & Unwin (first published April 1st 2008)
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(showing 1-30)
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Maggie Stiefvater
Technically this little volume is part of Tales of Outer Suburbia, if memory serves, but if you can find it in this little hardback version, it is very agreeable. It works on so many levels — I read it to my kids, who are 8 & 9, and we giggle and talk about metaphor.
It's the first thing we show any new visitors to our house. "Look what our foreign exchange student left for us," we tell them. "It must be a cultural thing," says Mum.
I solemnly promise: Should a Thumbelina-sized Eric (His real name is too difficult to pronounce for us) ever decide to stay at my place as a foreign exchange student, I am going to refrain from buckling him into a car seat, where he would be blocked from seeing the world (Easy, since I don't own a car). I will coo about each bonb
Moira Russell
So fucking adorable and well-done, it will renew your faith in humankind and make you think the world isn't heading for disaster after all. The final panel is indeed worth a thousand words. Surreal but warm, enigmatic yet touching, this book is fantastic. You can read it online here:
Miss Bookiverse
Dec 27, 2012 Miss Bookiverse rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: st-mine, picturesque
This is such a cute book, and only a little smaller than a postcard.
The drawings are adorable and beautiful.
At first I was afraid the storyline would fall flat and disappoint me but then I turned the last page and I went all "aaaawwwww", perfect conclusion to the book.
Sophie VERStand
Dec 23, 2016 Sophie VERStand rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Einfach nur herzerwärmend und zauberhaft. :)
Jan 14, 2017 Maria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is so cute!
Aug 26, 2016 Octavi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maravilloso. Como todo lo que hace Tan.
Rikke Simonsen
Den her bog er simpelthen bare så sød og fin. Jeg havde ingen forventninger til den, og læste den egentlig bare som en overspringshandling den ene aften, men den havde skønne billeder, der passede godt sammen med de sparsomme ord og selve handlingen. Billederne er nok det element, der mest leder historien.

"Vi kunne bare kalde ham 'Erik'." - citat side 5.

Selvom det er en kort og letlæst bog, så formåede slutningen alligevel at sende en varme gennem min krop og plante et stort smil på mine læber.
Feb 03, 2015 Malapata rated it it was amazing
Shelves: relato
Un precioso relato breve. La magia de Tan logra dotar de una tremenda expresividad a un ser sin apenas rasgos.

Aug 20, 2016 Hilary rated it really liked it
Lovely illustrations, beautifully drawn in sepia with clever use of colour at the end. A short tale of a visitor who's host family does not feel they connect with him. This book was in the 'picture books for older children' section of our library but I think it's suitable for any age.
Dec 24, 2013 Marco rated it it was amazing
This bitch almost made me cry.
A perfect Christmas read.
Katie Padfoot
Mar 30, 2016 Katie Padfoot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ADORABLE!!! and so beautifully illustrated!
that final page. warm fuzzies galore.
May 31, 2012 Joyce rated it it was amazing
This book is heart warming, especially when you get to the last few pages. I audibly gasped and felt this huge surge of happiness run through me- it's that kind of book. Don't think just because it's book filled with really lovely illustrations that it's just for children, because it taps into the topic of the nature of 'good' living beings- which everyone, at any age should be able to relate to.

I first came upon this little book in a creaky book store, snuggly tucked away in the shelves. I was
Feb 13, 2017 Shira rated it really liked it
Pally Chohan
Aug 12, 2015 Pally Chohan rated it it was amazing

A charming and magical little book, which explores the differences of people. Eric is a Foreign exchange student (we do not know where he is from or anything about his life), who is very different to his host family, he is very inquisitive asking questions which may seem bizarre, especially to those who no longer appreciate the simple pleasures of life. But leaves his mark on the family with his beautiful gift, long after he suddenly leaves, without any explanation.
The illustrations are simply
Gonzalo Mata
Dec 05, 2016 Gonzalo Mata rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I just read this little picture storybook online at:

It was a delightful way to begin my morning: an utterly enchanting, beautifully illustrated tale. Perfectly subtle yet powerfully presenting themes of difference, curiousness, apprehension and acceptance, this book is a tiny wonder.
Oct 26, 2012 Annaleise rated it it was amazing
This is just beautiful. I don't understand all of it, but the illustrations are stunning, they draw you in completely in just a few pages and very little text. This is not a sad story, yet I was almost in tears reading this...

This would be perfect as a gift for any age.

Oct 03, 2011 Cynthia rated it it was amazing
I read this story as a part of "Tales From Outer Suburbia" and it's by far my favorite. It makes you feel so warm inside...(-_-)<3
Dec 31, 2013 Nim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Nim by: Queen of Mirkwood
The most enchanting thing I have ever seen.
Jan 21, 2015 Molly rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, hey-shorty
Cutest little slice-of-life short (from Tales from Outer Suburbia).
Very short but adorable.
May 29, 2012 David rated it it was amazing
A special one for me.
Jan 24, 2013 Shailyn rated it really liked it
This is a very cute story that really shows the importance of cultural sensitivity and how we never really know the thoughts and feelings of another being and so we shouldn't be quick to judge.
May 08, 2014 Orvokki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Milá ilustrovaná knižka, ktorú prečítate za pár minúť postávajúc v kníhkupectve pri polici s knihami. Ale je tak krásna, že si ju dosť možno po dočítaní aj tak kúpite a prinesiete domov.
Nov 23, 2014 Belf rated it it was amazing
Utterly stunning.
Feb 15, 2017 Keira rated it liked it
3.5 stars. Rather peculiar, very short, sweet, told in pictures with only a few sentences every couple of pages. It would definitely make a good book to discuss with children about differences in culture, giving thanks and underlying meaning in pictures.
Mar 04, 2017 Karen rated it really liked it
A great children's book about the beauty of being different.
Lari Smith
Sep 24, 2016 Lari Smith rated it it was amazing
I can usually write and express myself well. When it comes to death, loss and trying to find what to say to those affected, the words collapse in my mouth and the sentences falter on the pages. I cannot adequately sum up any words, death and loss are sometimes larger. I read this little excerpt after a family loss and it punched me in the gut...death and loss have never been put this way for me and it blew right through me. Another brilliant book, and one that words cannot be used to accurately ...more
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Shaun Tan (born 1974) is the illustrator and author of award-winning children's books. After freelancing for some years from a studio at Mt. Lawley, Tan relocated to Melbourne, Victoria in 2007. Tan was the Illustrator in Residence at the University of Melbourne's Department of Language Literacy and Arts Education for two weeks through an annual Fellowship offered by the May Gibbs Children’s Liter ...more
More about Shaun Tan...

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