Icons of Evolution
Pacific Island Tree-snails, family Partulidae
by Justin Gerlach
ISBN 978-0-9932203, published in 2016 by Phelsuma Press, Cambridge, UK, paper covers, size about 2.15 by 28.75 cm. (8.5 by 11 inches), 332 pages, illustrated throughout with varying sized color photographic plates, line drawings, charts and maps.
This is a very important monograph dealing with the diversity and the variety found in these terrestrial snails in island groups in the Pacific. I feel that this book will be one that will be useful to land- shell collectors and even greater appeal to those working with the molluscs in this family. The book is very well illustrated and extremely well documented. I find it unfortunate that somewhere along the line a decision was made to hold the cost of the book down. I feel that a book like this, that is intended for use should have been put in hardcovers and with a better binding than that which was used. Also disappointing is the decision to use matte paper rather than glossy stock making the photographic plates, that are actually well done, have a washed out appearance. A book like this deserves better production. There is apparently a hard covered version of this book that is available. It is considerably more expensive than this version and I am looking into its details. Apart from these complaints the work done in the research and its presentation in charts, tables, maps and drawings, as well as its full accounts and descriptions make it a book well worth having. The author is a researcher with the University Museum of Zoology, Cambridge, U.K. and a senior member of the teaching staff at Robinson College, Cambridge. He is the author om many other books on diverse subjects of biogeography.