Monday, April 11, 2022

The Cartographers

Author:  Peng Shepherd

Publisher:  William Morrow

Date Published:  March 15, 2022

Genre:  Adult Fiction, Magical Realism, Mystery

Rating:  ⭐

My Thoughts:

-    The Cartographers was one of the choices for my Book of the Month subscription. It caught my eye out of all the picks, and I'm glad I chose it. I'm not sure I would have read it otherwise. 

-    Nell loves maps, and so do her parents, and everyone else she knows. Nell is also on non-speaking terms with her father, which is majorly sad when she gets a call from a family friend that her dad has mysteriously died. While going through his office, Nell discovers an old gas station map. It was among a box of other maps that started the feud with her father. Nell doesn't understand why he would keep such a worthless map, especially after their fight over how worthless it was. Nell starts digging into the past, and she slowly discovers a mystery surrounding a family secret and a town that doesn't exist.

-    The story is a very s l o w build. There were times when I had to push through so I could get to the next good part. The mystery and discoveries kept me interested, and there were moments where the pacing was more exciting, but I struggled through the slower parts.  

-    I don't read a lot of magical realism, so this was new and unique for me. I enjoyed the overall story and "what if" factor. It definitely got the imagination going. 

-    I felt like the whole book is a love note to all map lovers. I really liked the way the characters talked about maps and their importance. The question, "What is the purpose of a map?" kept coming up, and I loved all the answers. I will never look at maps the same way. 

My Thoughts in a GIF:


  1. I do love maps, so I will probably like this book. Though I might struggle with the slow parts, too. :)

    1. Despite the slow parts, I still enjoyed the story. If you love maps, I think you'd like this.

  2. My father was a cartographer and I've always been fascinated with maps. I might like this one.

    1. That is so cool! I think you'd like this too.

  3. I really love the cover. I have a hard time with books that are super slow to start, though.

    1. Me too. I struggled a few times, but it was worth it in the end.