A review by junowo
The Cartographers, by Peng Shepherd

adventurous emotional mysterious reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


This book was such a fun read. I was a bit intimidated at first with the introduction to the complex academic world of maps, but Shepherd guides the reader through it expertly, making it still feel complex without losing you.
The characters were well written and defined throughout the book, and I found myself impressed by how they all held such individual voices in the story.
I think my only disappointment comes in the ending.
Spoiler I felt that Wally’s motivations for his actions weren’t as clear or strong as I was expecting, and I don’t know that I’ll ever understand Tam’s decision to stay in Agloe. Swann’s death also felt a bit unnecessary.

Overall, I highly recommend the book! It puts a fun and interesting spin on a mystery and brought me into the world of maps, which I never would’ve thought I would be interested in, but nonetheless I’m fascinated by now!

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