Tim Marshall’s global bestseller Prisoners of Geography offered us a “fresh way of looking at maps” (The New York Times Book Review), showing how every nation’s choices are limited by mountains, rivers, seas and concrete. Since then, the geography hasn’t changed, but the world has.
Now, in this revelatory new book, Marshall takes us into ten regions that are set to shape global politics and power. Find out why the Earth’s atmosphere is the world’s next battleground; why the fight for the Pacific is just beginning; and why Europe’s next refugee crisis is closer than we think.
In ten chapters covering Australia, The Sahel, Greece, Turkey, the UK, Iran, Ethiopia, Saudi Arabia, Spain and Space, Marshall explains how a region’s geography and physical characteristics affect the decisions made by its leaders. Innovative, compelling, and delivered with Marshall’s trademark wit and insight, this is a gripping and enlightening exploration of the power of geography to shape humanity’s past, present, and—most importantly—our future.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 6 members
This was an absolutely wonderful look at how geography has shaped the current political landscape of our times. Marshall covered each of the major "hotspot" areas very well and in deep detail. I would highly recommend this to anyone interested in how geography affects politics.
This author has a great gift of being able to write about a topic that can be potentially very dry and boring and presents it in a very relatable narrative. Facts are put into a perspective that is both intriguing and informative. Also a little bit of humor sprinkled throughout the narrative makes it a very enjoyable read. Also, as with his previous book, Prisoners of Geography, you will .never look at the world the same way again!
The Power of Geography by Tim Marshall was not what I expected but nevertheless was a very interesting read. I thought it perhaps would be similar to Robert Kaplan’s; The Revenge of Geography, but it is not. I think though they are both complimentary to each other. Mr. Marshal’s book is more about how geography within a country or along its borders influences the thoughts and actions internal to the country as opposed to being more outward or protective leaning. The book covers ten different regions or countries many of which I knew little and had mean doing mini-deep dives through Google searches to learn more. The book has maps but I always find this difficult to use in an e-book so again I read this book on a tablet sitting by my computer where I often had a map on the screen. Some of the countries were not so interesting to me; UK, Australia, Greece, Spain as examples. Some were very interesting; Iran, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and some led me to learning more about regions I should know more; The Sahel and Ethiopia. The last because of the conflict going on with the Tigray region. I do not this book can be considered a “bucket list” book but as a start to learn more about various regions. Mr. Marshall does an excellent job like an expert short story writer in presenting lots of information as an excellent read in a short number of pages on each area. To conclude, I do recommend this book to anyone who is interested in understanding how geography can create the thinking within a country and will have you searching for more.
This is my second read by the author and by now I’m convinced that what Tim Marshall doesn’t know about geopolitics isn’t worth knowing. Which is to say that you can give yourself a splendid, thorough and ingenious look into the makings of the world by reading Marshall’s books. Worth Dying For was a terrific look at the significance of flags in nation building. This book, a fourth in his series on geopolitics, follows up Prisoners of Geography (which I would love to read some day if our library ever gets their sh*t together and acquires any of the authors books) in contemplating the significance of individual geographical specifics and the way they shape and inform the nations therein. It isn’t reductive and it isn’t determinism, geography is a serious matter. Not enough water and you’re easily ruined, then again same goes for too much water. Mountainous regions may make your country tough to invade, but it’ll also present numerous challenges for goods distribution, transportation, etc. within. Got natural resources? Good. But are they the kind the world is trying to get away from, like oil? Are you handling them properly or letting others exploit them for you? And so on and so forth. Marshall spans continents to cover the world at mercy of its geography and then takes it all the way to space, because that is after all, the final frontier and people are inevitable going to want to do that thing that always do with frontiers…mess with them. I follow politics, read the news daily, read books about the subject, so a lot of it isn’t new to me, but even if you’re familiar with the facts and data, there’s still so much to be gained from reading this book to have a real expert, someone with real life/real place boots in the dirt experience like Marshall, who is also a first class mind and an intelligent, engaging and even humorous author to interpret these facts and data and to weave them into a cohesive narrative stretching from well into the past right into the speculative plausible future. It’s a first rate education burrito wrapped in a smart, well informed and terrifically informative narrative tortilla. Bleak as all get out, but then again, that’s politics for you. Great read. Recommended. Thanks Netgalley.