Awesome book cover Friday: On the Map

Happy Friday! Today’s book cover pick is On the Map: A Mind-Expanding Exploration of the Way the World Looks by Simon Garfield (@simongarfield), who also wrote Just My Type: A Book About Fonts, which I’ve really, really been wanting to read for ages now. I LOOOVE typography and graphic design, too.

Back to On the Map. This one came out only last month, so it’s only available in hardcover. But Garfield must have recognized how cool Just My Type‘s cover was because this one’s equally as attractive.

On the Map by Simon Garfield

Here’s a description of the book:

Imagine a world without maps. How would we travel? Could we own land? What would men and women argue about in cars? Scientists have even suggested that mapping — not language — is what elevated our prehistoric ancestors from ape-dom. Follow the history of maps from the early explorers’ maps and the awe-inspiring medieval Mappa Mundi to Google Maps and the satellite renderings on our smartphones, Garfield explores the unique way that maps relate and realign our history — and reflect the best and worst of what makes us human.

Featuring a foreword by Dava Sobel and packed with fascinating tales of cartographic intrigue, outsize personalities, and amusing “pocket maps” on an array of subjects from how to fold a map to the strangest maps on the Internet, On the Map is a rich historical tapestry infused with Garfield’s signature narrative flair. Map-obsessives and everyone who loved Just My Type will be lining up to join Garfield on his audacious journey through time and around the globe.

This sounds really interesting, actually. I always thought that language was bigger proof of our evolutionary advancement than map-making, but I guess I need to read Garfield’s book to find out more.

What do you think of the book and cover? I love how the font flows down the hand, which almost resembles a continent itself in the way it’s designed.

And what’s everybody doing this weekend? I’m thinking a trip to Half-Price Books is in order, and I can’t wait to start my next book (new update on that on Monday). I’m working through Silent Hill: Downpour, too, if anyone’s a fan of the video games (I’m nuts for them).

And I’m playing around with my NEW IPAD MINI. I can’t believe how much faster and sleeker the design is for reading Twitter, RSS, and other feeds, and checking email is a snap. Typing, on the other hand …

Awesome book cover Friday: On the Road

Today’s pick is an old cover of John Kerouac’s On the Road, published in 1957. Time magazine voted it one of the best novels from 1923 to 2005, when the article was written.

On the Road by John Kerouac

The novel is based on Kerouac’s travels with his friends across America, and I think the watercolor, notebook sketch look to this cover exudes an autobiographic feel, like someone who draws the people and places he sees as he wanders. What do you think? Have you read On the Road?