The new edition of the Oxford Atlas of the World is a splendid achievement in geographical reference. The 176 pages of full-color, computer-generated maps reflect all of the most recent geopolitical changes in detailed and dramatic terrain modeling, with a dedicated page of maps featuring current world hot spots. A special city map section with its own 8000-entry index covers 67 major international metropolitan areas with 38 close-up maps of city centers; more than 70 world and regional thematic maps with illustrations and text explore topics from demographics and economics to the environment. The general index features 75,000 entries with full geographic coordinates. An "Images of Earth" section presents 17 stunning, full-page satellite photos, and a 32-page gazetteer section provides ready-reference information arranged alphabetically with data boxes, country summaries, and official flags, including East Timor and the latest designs for Afghanistan, Comoros, and Rwanda. This superior reference is an extraordinary value and is highly recommended for all reference collections. The handsome new edition of the Hammond World Atlas competes directly with the Oxford Atlas: the two share size, price, and format, but the former lacks the gazetteer and separate city maps. Major metropolitan areas appear mostly as insets in regional maps, rather than in their own section with detailing of city centers. Hammond's text and maps are completely up-to-date, and there is a richly illustrated 64-page "Thematic Section," a 48-page "Satellite Section" with color photos and commentary, and 181 pages of full-color physical and political maps representing the world, continents, and regions with state-of-the-art, detailed, computer-generated terrain modeling. The index features 110,000 entries, and the alphabetically arranged Quick Reference Guide" provides basic geographical statistics and, when applicable, capitals for continents, countries, states, provinces, and territories. The high quality of the cartography and the up-to-the-minute material make this atlas an excellent geographical reference resource, recommended for most libraries. However, the gazetteer and city maps section give the Oxford Atlas the overall edge.-Edward K. Werner, St. Lucie Cty. Lib. Syst., Ft. Pierce, FL Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up- With revised and updated maps, this resource boasts the accuracy of its predecessor (2002). However, the volume's copious extras are what really stand out: "Thematic Sections" on topics ranging from global climate zones to the economics of tourism; a fascinating collection of satellite maps; and handy statistical summaries of all the countries of the world, listing population, national religion, capital, and other fast facts. Best of all are the "Continental Themes" that precede each regional grouping in the main map section, which offer contextual information relevant to each continent (for example, the European Union, or the impact of the December 2004 tsunami). The graphic design has been updated to a cleaner, more eye-catching style than that of the previous edition, with full-color photographs throughout. Pagination may prove an issue (numbers start over in each section, and there is no way to find the beginning of one except by browsing). Still, this is a valuable edition that thoroughly addresses current environmental concerns, with multiple maps and essays covering topics such as global warming and the future of energy sources.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Carroll County Public Library, MD
The latest child of Hammond's Digital Cartographic Database features beautifully tinted and shaded maps digitalized from satellite images. The introductory section includes a brief discussion of the history of cartography, describes how computer-generated maps are made and Hammond's unique projection system, and provides concise information on climate, geology, energy resources, environment, and population. In addition to 160 country and regional maps, 60 inset maps show major cities and surrounding areas. Each continent section opens with a satellite image and a political map, and each page includes a tiny locator map showing which part of a continent the map depicts. Oversize: 11x14<">. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)