‘Maps for Curious Minds:’ A Book Review

Books Entertainment Reviews

It’s been a while since I’ve reviewed a good infographic book. And now, like buses, two have come along at once. We have Brilliant Maps for Curious Minds and North American Maps for Curious Minds. Subtitled “100 New Ways to See the World” (“Continent” for the US book), both books offer up a delicious smorgasbord of geographical information. Both are pure geek manna. More information about the books and lots of amazing maps stuff and can be found at Brilliant Maps.

What Are Maps for Curious Minds?

The world and America books both take the same form. They’re smallish hardbacks (7″X9″) and have 208 pages. Most but not all of the maps and information are presented as a double-page spread. All are presented with the blocky bright colors we’ve come to expect from infographics. The books will be of interest to curious children aged around 11 upwards and, of course, curious adults of all ages. 

What Sort of Things Are Mapped?

We have 200 new ways to look at stuff. What can you expect to find if you pick up a copy of the books? 

The world book is broken down into 9 different sections including “Nature,” “People and Populations,” and “Politics Power and Religion.” The North America-specific edition has 7 sections, including “Geography” (which also has its own section in the world book), “Politics and Power”, and “Culture and Sports.” 

As you would expect, the make-up and presentation of the books are very similar. They present interesting tidbits of data in a visually appealing way. For example, the world’s highest speed limits or where 95% of Canada’s population lives (the answer to this blew me away).

The books are filled with things you might never have considered, world plug socket styles or the states that have a smaller population than New York City. Both books will make you think about the world around you. 

Why Read Maps For Curious Minds?

Whether you’re looking for information about the entire world or just North America, these books are great for firing inquisitive minds. Because they’re not massively text-heavy, flicking through the books invites you to linger on the colorful maps within. 

Information is beautiful and is beautifully arranged in the Maps of Curious minds books. They’re a testament to the power of discovering facts and figures that you didn’t know you didn’t know. I have flicked back and forth through these books, (because they are perfect for dipping in and out of) exclaiming “I did not know that!” They’re those sorts of books.

It’s an indication of the quality of these books that my 16-year-old son, who already knows everything, is more than happy for me to tap him on the shoulder and reveal the most recent piece of trivia I have discovered. He’s a data geek too. Whilst he’d never admit it, he loved to take a peek at the books too. Any books that can trigger questions and interest in the world in which live will always come highly recommended on GeekDad, and so it is for Maps for Curious Minds.  

If you’d like to pick up a copy of these books, you’ll find them here in the US (Curious World Maps) and Curious North America, and here in the UK–(world maps) and here (North America maps). 

If you enjoyed this review, check out my review of Earth Is Big, another great infographic book, this time for younger children. 

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in order to write this review. 

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