Many geologists, heading for work or holiday in a new part of the world, will look for a concise, informative overview of that region’s geological history. Frustratingly, the availability of such reviews, in the journals or in a book, does not always correlate with the geological fame of the region. So, in several visits to the incomparable Permian reef belt of west Texas and New Mexico, I have failed to find a book that reliably summarizes the complete geological history of this dry southwest corner of the USA. This is all the more surprising because the region includes that most...

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