Armchair adventurers, you want this book.
Unassuming at first glance, the Pocket Atlas of Remote Islands: Fifty Islands I Have Not Visited and Never Will by Judith Schalansky is a delight to read. As I read it, I imagine myself as a cranky, old lady recounting tales of gorgeous islands that no one should ever step foot on.
Schalansky’s atlas illustrates islands as far north as Bear Island (Norway) and south as Deception Island (Antarctica), but what brings the islands to live are its histories. Each tiny continent (as she refers to them) possess tales of rare animals and lost explorers. Stories of scientists and castaways.
Make sure you don’t skip right to the maps, but dive into the Preface, titled “Paradise Is An Island. So Is Hell.” As child trapped in her world by the Berlin Wall, the only traveling she able to do was via her fingers in her atlas. Thus began her love affair with maps, topography and, of course, islands.
Pocket Atlas of Remote Islands would make a terrific gift for anyone who wishes to travel to exotic places without the facing the dangers of remote tropical (or frozen) islands. It’s small size makes it ideal as a stocking stuffer.
Giveaway: Win 1 of 2 copies of Pocket Atlas of Remote Islands by Judith Schalansky! Just enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. If you’re reading this via email, just click through to the website! (U.S. addresses only, no PO Boxes)