my recent reads..

Hand Drawn Maps - Corsair

Maps have always intrigued me. As a career seafarer, my Dad always had nautical charts around the house, and drawing a map of a saxon village is one of my most distinct primary school memories.

I just stumbled upon the Hand Drawn Maps Association, which will be publishing a collection of hand drawn maps and in anticipation is running a contest for everyone to submit their own maps. In terms of esoteric deliciousness, this is certainly up there with the Cloud Appreciation Society
One of my favourite user submissions so far is David Donachie's RPG coastal map of the country of Tanaloth.

Maps also played a role in a book a recently finished listening to. Tim Severin's Corsair is the story of Hector Lynch who is taken from Ireland by slavers from the Barbary Coast and recounts his adventures to escape captivity. He helps his friend Dan, a slave from the Miskito Coast, turn his tattoo skills to map illustration for their Turkish master and take another step towards freedom.

Corsair is a ripping yarn in the best swashbuckling tradition, however the details that Severin weaves into the tale provide a fascinatingly different perspective on the 17th century, one that is more centered on the North African and Islamic world in both location and outlook.

The reading is brilliantly delivered by Rupert Farley. Highly recommended.