A punk rock vision quest told in the tradition of the anarchist travel story, Off the Map is narrated by two young women as they discard their maps, fears, and anything resembling a plan, and set off on the winds of the world. Without the smug cynicism that seems to permeate most modern radical tales, this story is told with genuine hope, and a voice that never loses its connection with the mysteries of life, even in the midst of everyday tragedies. Wandering across Europe, the dozens of vignettes are the details of the whole—a squatted castle surrounded by tourists on the Spanish coast, a philosophizing businessman on the highways of France, a plaça full of los crustos in Barcelona, a diseased foot in a Belgian train squat, a glow bug on the dew-covered grass of anywhere—a magical, novel-like folktale for the end of the world. 146 pages long with a cover featuring original artwork by Nikki McClure.
“That’s what Off the Map is: a love letter on wings. These are the tales, the anecdotes, the astute and epiphanic and damn-near clairvoyant observations, laments, and joys that get chronicled yet never seem to make it farther than the pages of our own imaginations. Yet, our authors, who we know as simply Hib and Kika, have actually made the generous leap from journal notes to fluid, intimate prose. A self-avowed text of dreams, these stories are yarns that yearn to be unraveled and reveled in.
“Recording a summer of backpacking through Europe, these stories will be familiar to anyone who has traveled or dreamed of traveling—anyone who has yearned for all sorts of unfettered existences. What makes this book both realistic and fantastic is its honesty—it is as unapologetically real as any journal that we can dig out of our bookshelves. Its unmediated naivete and idealism is beautifully interwoven with insights into and discussions of landscapes urban and rural, real and imaginary, making for some of the most complex and adept prose in zines to date.”
words to watch Out for , April 2006