New Leaf: The Gemstone Detective

New on Just Real Ruby – New Leaf – a series of book reviews featuring on tomes that appeal to me and my interests.

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Gemstone Detective – Buying Gemstones and Jewellery in the USA by Kim Rix GG (GIA)

ISBN 978-1-912635-72-6 – £14.99 – Filament Publishing

Please note: I received a free e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

The latest book in a series of Gemstone Detective titles: Buying Gemstones and Jewellery in the USA is a practical purchasing guide for tourists visiting the states with an interest in where their jewels come from and how to dodge imitations and stay within customs rules and local laws when buying.

The USA is a massive country and a huge gemstone market, so it is understandable that the author has focused on some of the most abundant states for gemstone experiences – Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Arkansas, North Carolina and New York State. The guide includes one of the world’s most famous gem fairs, gemstone and mineral museums, popular shopping hotspots, two mining areas and lots of ‘dig-your-own’ tourist experiences.

The guide sets out important information for non-expert gem buyers. The author’s expertise is translated well into bullet points which highlight the “need to knows” and the “nice to knows”. Information is presented clearly and concisely.

As someone who has recently embarked on the study of gemmology this book serves as both a tantalising brochure of the possibilities of travelling to the United States to explore the treasure trove of gemstone adventures on offer and as a template for thought processes on evaluating stones.

Kim Rix’s book is an ideal blend of travel anecdotes, subject expertise and invaluable information, which one might only expect to be upstaged by traveling alongside Kim herself.

I was given an e-copy of this book for the purposes of this review – but I’ve since bought a copy of one of Kim’s other titles from the series. I’ve found the books are ideally sized for stowing in hand luggage to while away flight time with.

I could imagine happily devouring this on a flight to a holiday destination – it’s packed with information and reads nicely without requiring focussed concentration – but even as someone not on my way there right now I enjoyed this book. I’ll be investing in further titles from the Gemstone Detective soon.