The German trade press informs us that Judith Schalansky's Atlas of Remote Islands has won the German Design Prize 2011 for communication design, having taken the 2009 prize for the most beautiful German book.
And you can now get it in English, translated by Christine Lo. Schalansky spent weeks in Berlin's state library, pondering over the huge globe to find 50 islands she had never visited and never will. She found out their locations and researched their histories. And then she drew her own maps of them and wrote a short accompanying piece about each of them. It really is a gorgeous book, perfect for dipping into when your inner geographer needs a spot of pampering.
Go to the link above for a sample of the maps and Schalansky's beautiful, often wistful and witty writing. And I believe she's moving into fiction, so definitely one to watch.