Oh, maps, how I love thee. Maps are a staple in the world of fantasy novels, and sometimes it seems as though a great map is the mark of a great book. It always puts a smile on my face when I flip open the cover of a brand new book and find a map looking back at me. Maps are really such a fantastic added touch to a novel. They add a little extra whimsy to any fantasy story, and they really aid in any visualization of the world building.
There are just so many beautiful maps out there, but here are some of my favorites….
5. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes (Goodreads)
This map really isn’t that intricate, but what I like about it is that it is not just a white page with a map sketched across it in black ink. Even though the map is very simple, I find it to be very visually pleasing. I haven’t read Falling Kingdoms yet (a travesty, I know), so I have yet to learn how the map will tie into the story. As I was sifting through my books and looking for some of my favorite maps, I flipped open the cover of Falling Kingdoms for the first time. Now that I have had a glimpse of what this book has to offer, I am even more excited about reading it soon.
4. Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson (Goodreads)
What I really like about the maps in Mistborn is that we get to see a map of the entire Final Empire, as well as a detailed map of the city of Luthadel, where the majority of the action takes place. It really helps to put everything in the Mistborn world in perspective. The maps are incredibly detailed as well, which really helps with visualizing where the characters are while you are reading the book.
3. The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson (Goodreads)
Not only is this a pretty map, but it also shows an alternate version of the United States, called the United Isles. I have spent so much time admiring this map and looking at all the different names of the islands – names like Maineford, Canadia, the Floridian Atolls, and Georgiabama. It is quirky and fun and fits perfectly with the story that Sanderson weaves in The Rithmatist. It is also fun to see a re-imagining of a land that I live in, instead of a fictional realm that is created from scratch.
2. The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson (Goodreads)
Something that I like about the maps in The Kiss of Deception is that they are actually printed on the endpapers. It makes the map seem so much more expansive, rather than just having the map crammed onto one page at the start of the book. They are also sepia-toned, which is something that you rarely get to see in novels – typically we are always stuck with shades of black, white, and gray. Having the maps as the endpapers really added to my experience of cracking this book open for the first time, and made me so excited to see what adventures were waiting for me between the pages.
1. The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski (Goodreads)
Sometimes, a map is just a map, and sometimes, a map is a work of art. The map in The Winner’s Curse is incredibly intricate and beautifully drawn. This was another map that had been sitting on my shelf unseen until I rifled through my books to write this post. The Winner’s Curse has officially moved to the top of my TBR pile, because I am so intrigued by the land that is displayed in this map. There are also some pictures inset into the map, and I am dying to find out what they mean. This map is gorgeous and I can’t wait to see what this book has to offer.
What are some of your favorite maps?
When you open a new book and find a map of the world you are about to explore…..
…..blame it on the books.