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#RogersReads2020: Read a Book That Includes a Map

Aug 18, 2020

If you haven’t signed up for the #RogersReads reading challenge for 2020, now is the time! Click the #RogersReads image on the library website or use this link to begin logging your completed challenges and enter for monthly prizes! Each month, prizes will be awarded to two readers who enter a new book into their online log by the end of the month. If you complete all twelve prompts before February 2021, you will be entered for the grand prize that will be awarded at the end of the challenge.

Each month we will be highlighting one of the twelve reading prompts along with some ideas of titles that could fulfill that prompt. Share your own ideas and show off your progress by tagging us on social media with #RogersReads. Please remember that you can complete the #RogersReads prompts in any order using eBooks, audiobooks, or print copies of a title. We are excited to see what you select to fulfill this prompt!

Read a book that includes a map. 

We can’t travel much right now, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t escape to other places through reading! Many books include maps to describe real places we may be unfamiliar with or to help us imagine fantastic landscapes that may not even exist. Books like Why North is Up by Mick Ashworth, The Map that Changed the World by Simon Winchester, and Booked: A Traveler’s Guide to Literary Locations around the World by Richard Kreitner are about maps themselves, but there are plenty of books that contain maps without really being about maps or mapmaking. If you are looking to find some books with cartography, we can help map out your course.

Of the types of books that feature maps, travel books are the most reliable. Travel books are intended to help you navigate while abroad and feature detailed information about places people frequently visit. As such, they include maps to help guide you around the areas you are travelling to. Fodors, Lonely Planet, and EyeWitness Travel are the most common publishers of these kinds of books, and they have titles for an abundance of locations.

There are also travel narratives that often include maps of the areas the person is writing about. Midnight to the North by Sheila Nickerson, The Lost City of Z by David Grann, or See You in the Piazza by Frances Mayes all include maps in their tales of adventurous traveling.

Many historical books include maps to help describe the events in what may be an unfamiliar landscape. History books set in specific places or about specific battles, for example, will often feature maps of the area affected. Overground Railroad by Candacy Taylor, When the Mississippi Ran Backwards by Jay Feldman, and The Last Boat Out of Shanghai by Helen Zia all feature maps to inform the historical or social issues they address.

Are you looking for something tasty to read? A surprising number of cookbooks include maps! Cookbooks that cover cuisines from specific areas especially tend to have a map to reference at the beginning. Quintessential Filipino Cooking by Liza Agbanlog, Extra Virgin by Gabriele Corcos & Debi Mazar, or Wine for Normal People by Elizabeth Schneider all use maps to explore ingredients from unfamiliar places.

Many science books about ecology or animals include maps to describe the places those environments or animals exist. You can explore the wonders of nature with The Incredible Journey of Plants by Stefano Mancuso, Ocean Anatomy by Julia Rothman, or Tree Story by Valerie Trouet.

If you are an animal-lover, you can also check out books like The Complete Book of Dinosaurs by Dougal Dixon, The Rise of Wolf 8 by Rick McIntyre, or Attracting Birds and Butterflies by Barbara Ellis.

Maps do not have to be of this world to count for this challenge. We have several books about astronomy that feature maps of the stars. Cosmos by Ann Druyan, Space Atlas by James Trefil, and 100 Things to See in the Night Sky by Dean Regas all feature such celestial maps.

A lot of fantasy series include maps to help orient the readers to the new and unfamiliar world they are entering. These maps are usually of imaginary places, but their geography is still an important part of the story. Some of the “classics” like The Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, and The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe include maps, and they have set the standard.

Some newer fantasy titles that include maps are The Way of Kings by Brandon  Sanderson, The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, or The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon.

We are looking forward to a year full of challenging new reads with you!

Happy reading!