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An Atlas of Countries That Don't Exist:…
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An Atlas of Countries That Don't Exist: A compendium of fifty…

by Nick Middleton

Other authors: Sarah Greeno (Designer)

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Showing 5 of 5
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
An interesting book that is beautifully put together, but shallow on the subject. Mr. Middleton examines the notion of what is the standard for a nation, how they form and how they get recognized. The book compiles some "nations" that have or had some degree of existence, but some lesser degree of legitimate political recognition. These range from the pirate radio formation of Sealand to the globally preserved Antarctica. ( )
  dougcornelius | Jun 27, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
The physical book itself is beautiful and must have cost quite a lot to produce. Each "country" is presented with a two-page introduction on red paper with a cut-out revealing the shape of the country that is printed on the next page. It's very stylish and I'm at a loss to figure out how the publisher created these cut-outs short of doing them by hand.

They made an odd choice when they decided to use an italic font for the half-page article that accompanies each "country". It's a little hard to read and takes away from the pleasure of reading I normally get.

The selection of "countries" seems a little odd too. Some are all but legitimate sovereignties with seemingly strong legal claims to their own government. Others however are pretty farcical and the way the book is laid out makes no distinction between the two.

My biggest complaint however is that no matter how legit, ancient, and interesting the claim, each "country" gets the same short half-page write-up. It seems to me that some of these entries deserved at least a couple of pages to more fully explain the history and debate of the claim.

So to sum up, beautiful physical book but poorly executed "one-size-fits-all" format with a bad font choice to boot.

NOTE: If you'd really like to read a story about a failed "country", read Kurt Vonnegut's editorial Biafra: A People Betrayed. It'll break your heart, and the story of Biafra didn't even get a mention in this book! ( )
  5hrdrive | Jun 22, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
It's a book about 50 countries that lack (or lacked as some no longer exist) general outside recognition as independent states. Each country is given four pages. Page one has the country's name, a one sentence description, and its flag(s). Page two has some basic data and a cutout through which you can see the shape of the country. Half of page three is taken up by the cutout on the other side of the page, and the other half is a brief description of the history of the country. Page four is a map that is really only useful for showing the country's geographic location. It's an interesting concept, but it lacks in depth. ( )
  yoyogod | Jun 18, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This one sounds more interesting than it actually is. Each region gets a full page map and approximately half of a page of text, so readers learn less than they would have if they had just consulted Wikipedia.

As it styles itself an atlas one would think it would have good maps, but that is not the case: they do not show recognized national borders within the regions discussed, making it difficult to know what country is claiming them (the text rarely makes this clear, either); the scales are hidden so deep in the gutter that I didn't even notice they were there until halfway through the book; and all of the maps were rendered in an unattractive combination of blue-grey and red.

In short, it's definitely not worth the $30 cover price. ( )
  amanda4242 | Jun 16, 2017 |
Great concept and well executed. ( )
  sometimeunderwater | Oct 31, 2016 |
Showing 5 of 5
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Middleton, NickAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Greeno, SarahDesignersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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