Fossil & Recent Muricidae of the World
by D. Merle, B. Garrigues, J.-P. Pointier
2011, ConchBooks Hackenheim, Germany, laminated boards, about 8 by 11¾ inches (A4 size about 20 by 31cm.) 648 pages 181 full page sharp color photo plates, 81 color figures (photos and charts) in text.
This is the book that all Murex collectors have been waiting for and it really was worth the wait. In a word it is superb and now we finally have a book that is a worthy successor to the book by Radwin and D'Atillio and to the works of Roland Houart, Winston Ponder, Emily Vokes and others who have tried to update and improve upon the "old standard stand-by" that Radwin & D'Atillio wrote in the early 1970's. Working with this family is no easy task because of the many different subfamilies of the Muricidae and the authors have wisely to decided take on this project in parts. Most probably this first part on the Muricinae is the one that will have the greatest general interest. But if this is an example of what to expect the other parts of this study will also be something truly special. It is interesting to see that they have chosen to treat the fossil species as well as those in the species that are alive now. Too often we forget that every living species that we know of has a lineage that can be traced back in time through the fossil records. The introductory material and the descriptions of the super-specific level of these shells is superb. The descriptions given to the individual species opposite their plates is basic information but the plates are sharp and clear and make a written description almost redundant.