Out on 06 June 2024


Paulina Rowinska

06 June 2024
384 pages


'Historical insights and human stories . . . Highly readable' - Ian Stewart, author of What's the Use?
'An adventure' - Edward Brooke-Hitching, author of The Phantom Atlas

How does a delivery driver distribute hundreds of packages in a single working day?
Why does remote Alaska have such a large airport?
Where should we look for elusive serial killers?
The answers lie in the crucial connection between maps and maths.

In Mapmatics, Dr Paulina Rowinska embarks on a fascinating journey to discover the mathematical foundations of cartography and cartographical influences on mathematics.

From a sixteenth-century map that remains an indispensable navigation tool despite emphasizing the North–South divide to public transport maps that both guide and mislead passengers, she reveals how maps and maths shape not only our sense of space and time but also our worldview.

Through entertaining stories, surprising real-world examples and a cast of unforgettable characters, Mapmatics helps us to appreciate the mathematical methods and ideas behind maps. And, by illuminating how our world works, leaves us better equipped to understand and look after it.

A wonderfully readable adventure . . . An essential guide that illuminates how much of our understanding of the world, the past, and indeed the people around us, is shaped by the mathematician and the mapmaker.
Opens our eyes to the use of 'mapmaking' in the broadest sense . . . If you have ever wondered why an airliner bound from London to Los Angeles flies over Greenland, how we know what lies inside the Earth, or how computers correct errors, then this is for you. I learned a lot.
A highly readable account of how mathematics and mapmaking have joined forces to inform not only our view of the world, but our view of ourselves. The historical insights and human stories bring the whole topic vividly to life.