Few people in the world know their way around a map like John Hessler does. The Library of Congress’s “Specialist in Modern Cartography and Geographic Information Science” can look at a Renaissance, bit matrix, or Minecraft map and explain what each signifies and how they all relate.
Hessler and a team of contributors have put together a stunning cartographic encyclopedia titled, Map: Exploring The World ($59.95, Phaidon). In it, 300 maps tell the story of 5,000 years of human history, just not in chronological order. Map’s layout draws connections between eras, places, and themes with each turn of the page.