Firefly Guide to Gems
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Firefly Guide to Gems

3.0 1
by Cally Oldershaw
     
 

A reference guide to gems, semi-precious stones and crystals.

Gemstones and crystals are used for jewelry, industry, lasers and precision technology. Firefly Guide to Gems is a practical, compact guide to the identification and use of precious and semi-precious stones, novelty stones, agates and crystals.

An introduction explains geology,

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Overview

A reference guide to gems, semi-precious stones and crystals.

Gemstones and crystals are used for jewelry, industry, lasers and precision technology. Firefly Guide to Gems is a practical, compact guide to the identification and use of precious and semi-precious stones, novelty stones, agates and crystals.

An introduction explains geology, chemistry and gemstone properties in clear and accessible terms. Key aspects of gemstones are explained such as crystal structures and optical and physical properties.

The first section of the book focuses on precious gems in their many forms, with illustrations of priceless jewelry. Practical information includes:

  • Fashioning and cutting
  • Types and shapes of cut
  • Collecting
  • Handling and storing gemstones
  • Weighing and measuring stones

The second and main section supplies complete descriptions of a wide range of gems, organized by chemical composition, for instance:

  • Carbon (diamond)
  • Aluminum oxide (saphire and ruby)
  • Phosphate (turquoise)
  • Silica (opal)

A fascinating profile of each gem is accompanied with color photographs of the raw crystal, common cuts, and finally polished for use in jewelry. At-a-glance charts provide technical details such as refractive index, crystal group, luster, hardness and cleavage for each gem.

Easy-to-read and abundantly illustrated, Firefly Guide to Gems is ideal for collectors and rockhounds.

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Editorial Reviews

National Science Teachers Association Recommends - Cary Seidman
Makes the grade... a clear introduction to the classification of rocks and basic crystal structure... excellent section of gem descriptions.
Choice - W.C. Peters
Small but informative, handsome, and richly illustrated book... well-written and well-illustrated... highly recommended.
E-Streams - Lynn C. Westney
This expert knows his material expertly and provides an intriguing and colorful look at the world of gemstones... a gem of a guide.
VOYA
The books in the Firefly Guide series are characterized by their small size, small but clear typeface, splendid color illustrations, and densely informative text. They are generally written by distinguished authorities in the field. Their low cost and the high quality of the information and of the books themselves make them well worth considering for high school libraries. Guide to Gems is written by an examiner for the Gemmological Association of Great Britain. Geology students, as well as those interested in gemstones and jewelry, will find here a wealth of information. The text is enhanced by many beautifully clear color photographs of gem crystals, gems, and jewelry, and by drawings of crystalline structure and faceting. The introduction explains gem formation, mining procedures, the physical properties of gemstones, the cutting of gemstones, the history of gems and famous diamonds, gem lore, and birthstones. Next are descriptions of individual gems, both precious and semiprecious, including many that will likely be unfamiliar to the average reader. As a bonus, "organics" such as pearl, coral, ivory, and jet are considered as are gold, silver, and platinum. Maps show important gem locations in the world. This book is so informative, so inclusive, and so beautifully designed that it should find a place in every high school library. The only problem may be hanging onto it. The series also includes guides to the human body, global hazards, fossils, flags of the world, and space. (Firefly Guides).. VOYA Codes 5Q 3P S A/YA (Hard to imagine it being any better written; Will appeal with pushing; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12; Adult-marketed book recommended for YoungAdults). 2003, Firefly, 224p.; Glossary. Index. Illus. Photos. Maps., Trade pb. Ages 15 to Adult.
—Rayna Patton
KLIATT
A little gem in itself, this guide is rich in information. A lengthy introduction considers gem formation, mining, crystal structure and physical and optical properties of gems in addition to a history of gems and some detailed material on famous gems and the luck—or curse—they supposedly brought to their owners. The detailed pages on each gem considered are not organized alphabetically but are classified by chemical composition from carbon (diamonds) through oxides (including sapphires) to organics (pearls). Each gem has a page of its own with illustrations of color and cuts and a fount of technical information, such as chemical composition and refractive index. Detailed maps of six continents illustrate the locations where each type of gem is found. A valuable reference guide. KLIATT Codes: JSA—Recommended for junior and senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2004, Firefly, 224p. illus. maps., Ages 12 to adult.
—Pat Moore
School Library Journal
Adult/High School-Concise but thorough, these resources provide a wealth of information. Logically organized by subject, they are then subdivided many times so that a section will not overwhelm students. Outstanding color photographs, computer graphics, diagrams, and charts further clarify the texts by showing formation, movement, or cross-sections. The texts are readable and gradually move to more academic information within each section. Factual details are presented in easy-to-read charts. The first title includes hazards not always easily found in resources: droughts, landslides, avalanches, extinctions, and diseases, to name a few. Various aspects of pollution are included so that students may see what humans are doing to the environment. The second book opens with extensive introductory material including history, various properties, and lore. Then, each gem is presented with text and charts of specific chemical properties. While most gems are discussed on a single page, some that are well known have longer articles. Students will have to use the index to locate specific stones as they are organized by chemical composition. Each chemical group is identified by a different color stripe at the top of the page to unify the section. The last title opens with introductory material on cells, tissue, and organs before moving on to each body system. The final third is devoted to a glossary defining specific body parts, diseases, and medical procedures. These titles will be heavily used.-Claudia Moore, W. T. Woodson High School, Fairfax, VA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781552978146
Publisher:
Firefly Books, Limited
Publication date:
01/01/2009
Series:
Firefly Pocket Series
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
601,866
Product dimensions:
5.00(w) x 7.75(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Cally Oldershaw is a mineralogist and Liaison Officer for the Geological Society of London as well as an examiner for the Gemmological Association of Great Britain.

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