The Un-dis­cov­ered Is­lands by Malachy Tal­lack, NewSouth Books.

Australian Women’s Weekly NZ - - BOOKS - KE

Scot­tish writer and mu­si­cian Malachy Tal­lack charts the is­lands that time had to for­get, with the eye of a mariner and the sen­si­tiv­ity of an artist. “The oceans are full of such places; is­lands dis­cov­ered and then un-dis­cov­ered. They have ex­isted in every part of the world and ap­peared on maps for many years be­fore be­ing erased. Prod­ucts of imag­i­na­tion and er­ror.” Loosely cat­a­logued into four types: sa­cred is­lands of myth, those dis­cov­ered by sailors over the centuries, fraud­u­lent is­lands in­vented by hoax­ers, and sub­merged or “drowned” is­lands, this side of the world fea­tures aplenty in this ex­ot­i­cally il­lus­trated hard­back. In late 2012, an Aus­tralian re­search ves­sel study­ing tec­tonic evo­lu­tion in the Coral Sea west of New Caledonia, no­ticed that “Sandy Is­land” was on maps, but not on their chart. The ship sailed straight through the spot where the is­land should have been and the story made head­lines around the world. “Type the words into Google Earth’s search box today and the globe will still spin into po­si­tion, then set­tle on that spot be­tween Aus­tralia and New Caledonia,” writes the wist­ful, ever-hope­ful Tal­lack.

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