Unruly Places

Unruly Places

Lost Spaces, Secret Cities, and Other Inscrutable Geographies

Book - 2014
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A tour of the world's hidden geographies--from disappearing islands to forbidden deserts--and a stunning testament to how mysterious the world remains today

At a time when Google Maps Street View can take you on a virtual tour of Yosemite's remotest trails and cell phones double as navigational systems, it's hard to imagine there's any uncharted ground left on the planet. In Unruly Places , Alastair Bonnett goes to some of the most unexpected, offbeat places in the world to reinspire our geographical imagination.

Bonnett's remarkable tour includes moving villages, secret cities, no man's lands, and floating islands. He explores places as disorienting as Sandy Island, an island included on maps until just two years ago despite the fact that it never existed. Or Sealand, an abandoned gun platform off the English coast that a British citizen claimed as his own sovereign nation, issuing passports and crowning his wife as a princess. Or Baarle, a patchwork of Dutch and Flemish enclaves where walking from the grocery store's produce section to the meat counter can involve crossing national borders.

An intrepid guide down the road much less traveled, Bonnett reveals that the most extraordinary places on earth might be hidden in plain sight, just around the corner from your apartment or underfoot on a wooded path. Perfect for urban explorers, wilderness ramblers, and armchair travelers struck by wanderlust, Unruly Places will change the way you see the places you inhabit.

Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014.
ISBN: 9780544101579
Branch Call Number: 910
Characteristics: xvi, 270 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm


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Sep 25, 2018

What we haven’t done to the world and to one another. The strange places you’ve never heard about; the cities underground no one knew about; the islands that never existed and then disappeared. The things your Geography teachers (probably) never told you about. Author Bonnett is a practicing Georapher and has written this book (I presume) to share with you and me, the abstruse of Geography. And he has succeeded indeed. Read this book with Google Earth at hand. Recommended even to non-Geographers.

Sep 07, 2017

I loved this book. Very readable, with a great mix of philosophy and description. Just a few times I needed more physical description of the unruly place - the author occasionally assumes details that the reader simply doesn't know.

Jul 06, 2017

A thoughtful book about wide-ranging kinds of places, many which we might not have heard of before. A sense of place is important to our sense of self, and yet, it is disappearing as the world becomes more homogenized and developed.

Subjects include lost spaces, hidden geographies, no man's lands, dead cities, spaces of exception, enclaves and breakaway nations, floating islands, and ephemeral places. This book helps one to re-think their sense of place and what it might mean.

A nice addition is the latitude and longitude of some of the places so you can find them on Google maps.

Oct 07, 2015

A very interesting read about places that seem to fall in between in a variety of ways. Inspiring.

Apr 06, 2015

Not typical by any means, Bonnett has you scratching your head as he takes you to places on the planet that you never thought of as distinct locales.


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