Monday, March 2, 2015

Review: The Pocket Atlas of Remote Islands by Judith Schalansky

A lovely small-trim edition of the award-winning Atlas of Remote Islands 

The Atlas of Remote Islands, Judith Schalansky’s beautiful and deeply personal account of the islands that have held a place in her heart throughout her lifelong love of cartography, has captured the imaginations of readers everywhere. Using historic events and scientific reports as a springboard, she creates a story around each island: fantastical, inscrutable stories, mixtures of fact and imagination that produce worlds for the reader to explore. 

Gorgeously illustrated and with new, vibrant colors for the Pocket edition, the atlas shows all fifty islands on the same scale, in order of the oceans they are found. Schalansky lures us to fifty remote destinations—from Tristan da Cunha to Clipperton Atoll, from Christmas Island to Easter Island—and proves that the most adventurous journeys still take place in the mind, with one finger pointing at a map.



Received for review.

Alternately amusing and depressing this was a thoroughly enjoyable read.

The stories are all short and can be read in a matter of minutes but I foung it best to read just two or three stories at a time to give myself an opportunity to really appreciate their beauty and horror.  While each is interesting in its own right I found the most amusing story was about Christmas Island and the most depressing was about Deception Island.

Overall, this is an entertaining, thought provoking read and I highly recommend it.  It would also make a lovely gift for any armchair traveller. 

★★★★ = Really Liked It



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