Penguin set to release Riaz Dean’s new book in February 2022

The Stone Tower by Riaz Dean

A path traversed by caravans laden with silk, spices and much more besides, the old Silk Road influenced trade, religions, cultures and economies across Europe, Asia and far beyond.

In his latest book, Riaz Dean blends the best of this region’s history and geography with ancient cartography to solve a 2,000-year-old riddle that has perplexed scholars for centuries: Where was the Stone Tower that the great geographer Claudius Ptolemy had written about? This highly significant but now-lost landmark represented the midpoint and thumping heart of the Silk Road, as merchant caravans plied their wares between the Occident and the Orient.

From the significance of the Heavenly Horses to the intrigues of geopolitics and war between clans and kingdoms, Dean brings to life the legendary Silk Road even as his evocative narrative and meticulous research pinpoints the Stone Tower’s probable location somewhere by the so-called Roof of the World. 

About the author

This book is the result of a solo journey the author made retracing the old Silk Road. Along the way, amongst the mountains of Central Asia he stumbled across a landmark that, upon later researching the maps of Ptolemy, he came to realise was the geographer’s lost Stone Tower. Riaz Dean collects old books and maps about the exploration of this region, which also formed the basis for his first book Mapping the Great Game.

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