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Atlas of Remote Islands

Fifty Islands I Have Never Set Foot on and Never Will
Atlas of Remote Islands: Fifty Islands I Have Never Set Foot on and Never Will. Penguin. 2010. 144p. tr. from German by Christine Lo. maps. index. ISBN 9780143118206. $28. TRAV
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Schalansky grew up in East Germany from which, like most of her compatriots at the time, she was not allowed to leave. Instead, she traveled the world through atlases and developed a fascination with remote islands. Her prose here is almost poetic as she paints multidimensional portraits of 50 islands to go along with her full-color, original cartographic illustrations. Credit must also be given to translator Lo for retaining the expressiveness of Schalansky's voice. The attention to font, weight, and color in this book cannot be ignored. Schalansky's background in typography and passion for the art of cartography are apparent on every page. While the style of the book may appeal to younger readers, caution is advised as there are references to violence and rape.
VERDICT Recommended for armchair travelers, lovers of history, and anyone looking to get far, far away from it all.

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