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About the book
  • Published: 2 June 2016
  • ISBN: 9781473523777
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 96

No Map Could Show Them




The brilliant second collection from Next Generation Poet, T.S. Eliot and Costa shortlisted poet, Helen Mort

* A Poetry Book Society Recommendation 2016*

'When we climb alone
en cordée feminine,
we are magicians of the Alps –
we make the routes we follow
disappear'

The poems of Helen Mort's second collection offer an unforgettable perspective on the heights we scale and the distances we run, the routes we follow and the paths we make for ourselves.

Here are odes to the women who dared to break new ground – from Miss Jemima Morrell, a young Victorian woman from Yorkshire who hiked the Swiss Peaks in her skirts and petticoats, to the modern British mountaineer Alison Hargreaves, who died descending from the summit of K2.

Distinctive and courageous, these are poems of passion and precipices, of edges and extremes. No Map Could Show Them confirms Helen Mort’s position as one of the finest young poets at work today.

  • Pub date: 2 June 2016
  • ISBN: 9781473523777
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 96

About the Author

Helen Mort

Helen Mort was born in Sheffield in 1985, and grew up in nearby Chesterfield. Five times winner of the Foyle Young Poets Award, she received an Eric Gregory Award in 2007 and won the Manchester Young Writer Prize in 2008. Her first collection, Division Street (2013), was shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize and Costa Poetry Award, and won the Fenton Aldeburgh First Collection Prize. In 2014, she was named as a ‘Next Generation Poet’, the prestigious accolade announced only once every ten years, recognising the 20 most exciting new poets from the UK and Ireland. No Map Could Show Them (2016), her second collection, about women and mountaineering, was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation. Helen has been the Wordsworth Trust Poet in Residence and the Derbyshire Poet Laureate and was named one of the RSL’s 40 under 40 Fellows in 2018. She is a Lecturer in Creative Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University and lives in Sheffield. Black Car Burning is her first novel.

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Praise for No Map Could Show Them

“A highly intelligent, yet very accessible collection and an interesting addition to the ongoing discussion of where our culture is with gender identity… There is something which feels very necessary about this collection and there are moments throughout where it feels like a worthy successor to The Feminine Gospels and The World’s Wife.”

Huffington Post

“Wonderfully playful... In the crowded field of mountain literature, this precise, sparky and constantly surprising book more than holds its own.”

Roger Cox, Scotsman

“A perfect response to the chauvinism face by the earliest female mountaineers… This precise, sparky and constantly surprising book more than holds its own.”

Roger Cox, Yorkshire Post

“Superb young Sheffield poet.”

Horatia Harrod, Financial Times

“Mort’s assurance keeps us on edge, but trustful. One could say she doesn’t put a foot wrong. Her style is spare, showing bone without too much flesh… This is a strong, fierce collection.”

Peter Scupham, Literary Review

“An unforgettable perspective on the heights we scale…. Distinctive and courageous, these are poems of passion and precipices, of edges and extremes. No Map Could Show Them confirms Helen Mort’s position as one of the finest young poets at work today.”

Climb Magazine

“Mort’s work is firmly in the tradition [of] the greatest modern and contemporary English language poets. She’s channeling Philip Larkin’s shady pathos, and she’s hanging out in Derek Mahon’s forgotten places… Brilliantly laconic, perfectly-timed, sometimes playful…[with and] uncanny attention to detail.”

Climb Magazine

“This is a brilliant collection, thrilling in its explorations of our bodies as geological structures, and of our obsessions with mountains, stone and ice. It will come to be seen as an important book about gender and mountaineering, as well as much besides and beyond.”

Robert Macfarlane


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