An excellent basic reference to the ingredients and processes that forged our planet. Includes 500 detailed and easy-to-understand two-color maps, charts, illustrations and photos. Since the first edition of this book was published in 1998, technology for geological fieldwork has improved immensely. The coverage of these innovations, in a new chapter called "Monitoring Earth," is this book's best feature. It provides useful overviews, at a level of detail and in a vocabulary that is perfect for the audience, of concepts such as satellite laser ranging, which is used to measure the movement of continents, and the use of satellites in mapping the ozone layer. The rest of the book discusses the planet's formation; plate tectonics; methods of rock creation; how the sea, ice, and wind change the landscape; deciphering Earth's history from fossils and other rocks; exploitation of rocks and minerals, and, in another updated section, provides lists of prominent geologists and relevant institutions. David Lambert, 256 pages, 7 x 9 soft cover.