Fantasy Map Love

21 Mar

Not All Who Wander Are Lost

(Or, why I could easily navigate the way to Rabbit’s House/Monsea/the Gryffindor Common Room etc.)

So, maybe by now you guys know that I love fantasy. If you didn’t, well, I love fantasy. ADORE IT. When I read a high fantasy book that has a map, it instantly is one of my favorite things about that book. And when I read a high fantasy book that DOESN’T have a map? I feel like a big part of that book is missing. I want to be able to know the world, to see it, to understand how the author imagined the world as they were writing. Maps are, in my opinion, pivotal for context. Also, they’re pretty and often look old or antique, and this just tickles my history-loving fancy.

Because of this love, I wanted to show you some great fantasy maps. Some of these are from the books themselves, some of them are not. It’s certainly not an exhaustive list, but you can click on each to enbiggen. There were great maps that I couldn’t find images of online. I tried to keep it YA/MG, so it’s possible that I’ll highlight some adult high fantasies in future map nerdings.

But what do you guys think? Do you love maps like I do? What one map is a particular awesome favorite of yours? What fantasy that you’ve read most NEEDED a map (my personal vote for this is THE LOST CONSPIRACY)?

100 Acre Wood, by A.A. Milne

So, my map love probably started with this one: The 100 Acre Wood. I remember watching this cartoon in the mornings and loving how each episode started with a look at the map. SIGH. Winnie the Pooh 4 LIFE!!!

The Seven Kingdoms from Graceling, by Jeffery C. Mathison

The Dells from Fire, by Jefferey C. Mathison

Both of these maps appear in the published books of GRACELING and FIRE, so if you’ve read those books, you’ve seen these maps. But I still think they’re awesome and cool to look at and I LOVE Kristin Cashore, so Seven Kingdoms map love!

Ravka from Shadow and Bone, by Keith Thompson

You guys, I was already geeking out with excitement for SHADOW AND BONE by Leigh Bardugo when she posted this map of Ravka on her website a couple of months ago. If you haven’t seen it already, it’s totally worth an enbiggening. Plus, the illustrator, Keith Thompson, is the mad genius behind the interior illustrations in Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan series.

Kingdom of Tortall, by Haley

Tamora Pierce writes SERIOUSLY amazing girl-power high fantasy and I LOVE it. There are so many great maps of Tortall, in the books and elsewhere, but I like this one. One of my favorite things about Tamora Pierce’s books is that they all take place in the same world, so each book we read only furthers our familiarity with the places. SWEET!

Llyvraneth, by Mike Schley

I haven’t read STARCROSSED by Elizabeth C. Bunce yet, but it’s sitting right next to me as we speak. I will read this one ASAP.

Map of Hogwarts, by gamma-ray-burst. Harry Potter fans, you can download this map from this artist's Deviantart page!

Seriously. AWESOME. I love this Hogwarts map. LOVE IT.

Narnia, by Daniel Reeve

So, I’ve never read the Chronicles of Narnia–GASP!–but that doesn’t stop me from appreciating the map, friends. 


14 Responses to “Fantasy Map Love”

  1. Tara @ Hobbitsies March 21, 2012 at 3:51 pm #


    Anyway, for real. Maps ROCK. I love fantasy books with maps – it makes them that much more interesting and engaging. This post rocks and I’m so bookmarking it to check out the books I haven’t read. BUT YAY TAMORA PIERCE I AM A FANGIRL.

    • trippingbooks March 21, 2012 at 5:44 pm #

      hahaha….I LOVE YOU TOO!!!! And also Tamora. I have lots of catching up to do with her books, but she’s FAB.
      Aren’t maps the bees knees, though? I love them and–go figure!–I actually CONSULT them when I’m reading. YAY maps!

  2. Pocketful of Books March 21, 2012 at 4:03 pm #

    I love maps too. These are all really good ones too. I own the ‘Game of Thrones’ board game and the board is one huge, intricate GORGEOUS map and I stared at it for about an hour because it was so pretty. The one at the start of The Hobbit is also awesome x

    • trippingbooks March 21, 2012 at 5:48 pm #

      You own the Game of Thrones board game. I LOVE YOU. Seriously. BIG LOVE.
      I was going to put maps of Westeros and Middle Earth on here but there are SO MANY and they’re all so gorgeous! I have a folder on my desktop of just Westeros map images. And I found a map of Arda, which I had no idea was ALL of Middle Earth, which is actually HUGE, AND!! the Undying Lands. I died from nerdgasm. I’ll probably post some more of those maps another time because I LOVE them so much!

  3. Candice March 21, 2012 at 4:51 pm #

    Amy… get your self a set of the Narnia books and READ THEM!!!! We can remain friends if you do. (I am only kidding of course… 🙂 )

    I love maps so incredibly much. When I was in high school (high school!) I had this old map of Virginia, Maryland, etc. from the 1700s that was in French. I thought I was tres chic.

    I wonder how much fun I would get made of if I framed these maps and hung them around my house? I wonder how much I really care about being made fun of? 😉

    • trippingbooks March 21, 2012 at 5:51 pm #

      I actually HAVE a whole set but I’ve never read them! ACK! Ironically, my sister, who is a really hesitant reader, HAS read them. In fact, I think it’s her box set. Go figure.
      But I adore maps. Several years ago, my mom got me a huge map of middle earth for Christmas and I never hung it because I couldn’t find a frame the right size. But I do have one! I might be tempted to hang that sweet sounding old map you had in French! At least that one could be, you know, historical and pretty. 🙂

  4. A. Knight March 21, 2012 at 6:44 pm #

    Okay. I loved the Graceling maps, BUT THE SHADOW AND BONE MAP. Good gosh, I LOVED IT. 😀

    Now, I’m even more stoked to read this book. You’re right. I feel like maps are pivotal to the story. I just can’t imagine a true high fantasy read without it.


  5. March 22, 2012 at 12:24 pm #

    I haven’t seen that Hogwarts map! It would look fantastic on the wall next to my Narnia map.

    True story – I have a framed Narnia map on my wall.

  6. reutreads March 22, 2012 at 8:36 pm #

    I need a print of Hogwarts on my wall. Maybe I’ll get it painted on.

  7. Katie March 22, 2012 at 9:42 pm #

    This post is beauuutiful! Just looking at the maps made me want to read Graceling and Fire all over again. I feel like all fantasies should come with a map – it just makes them so much better!

  8. Heidi March 22, 2012 at 9:46 pm #

    Okay so this is officially one of my favorite posts anywhere ever!!! I am so with you, I think it’s something about being a lifelong fantasy lover, we just pour over these maps. I completely agree that books need them! I’ve been reading The Queen’s Thief series, and that’s been my only complaint–I want a freakin’ map!

    I really couldn’t get fired up about Shadow and Bone for some reason, it just didn’t grab me the way it seemed to so many others out there. But let me tell you the SECOND I saw that Keith Thompson map I knew I MUST READ IT. I LOVED his work in the Leviathan series, and this map just looks amazing. I’m completely drawn in. When you asked what our favorite maps were, my mind instantly went to the maps in Leviathan.

  9. Melanie @ bookobsessed84 March 23, 2012 at 12:39 pm #

    I love when books come with Maps! Such a cool post


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