On my way to the Thumb for an afternoon break, my collegue Alan Gishlick passed to me his booknote on The Cambrian Fossils of Chengjiang, China: The Flowering of Early Life. Although many Thumb patrons work (more or less) at University of Ediacara, we maintain an interest in the Cambrian even though the Cambrian critters are Johnnies-come-lately from our perspective.
Chengjiang is one of the few locations where the soft body parts of Cambrian animals are preserved (rather like the famous Burgess Shale in Canada). A detailed webpage introduces Chengjiang for readers who would like to learn more.
Alan Gishlick’s booknote follows:
For people interested in the Cambrian Radiation and the information contained in the Chengjiang Fauna of Kunming, China, I am pleased to inform you that the first English language book has been published on the topic. The Cambrian Fossils of Chengjiang, China: The Flowering of Early Life, is a comprehensive atlas of many of the fossil organisms in the Chengjiang localities. The book is authored by Xiang-Guang Hou, the discoverer of the Chengiang as well as co-authored by some of the leading western scholars on the Chengiang such as Jan Bergstrom. Surprisingly absent from the authorship, or even citations are the ID "experts" on the Cambrian Paul Chien, Steve Meyer and Paul Nelson. If you want nice pictures of the fossils, accurate scientific information on the fauna and don't read Chinese, this is the book for you. Available from Blackwell Publishing through Barnes and Noble: www.bn.com for $99.