Understanding, Identifying, Buying
Author: Keith Wallis
Format: hardback, 160 pages
Introduction: What constitutes a gemstone? Technical terms and how gems are identified. Basic gemmological instruments.
History, Myths and Legends
Precious stones [diamonds plus 58 common gemstones, including organic gems]
Jewellery. Buying Gemstones. Gemstones Around the World. Gems on the Internet. Appendices.
A good basic book in a traditional format: a short introduction to gemmology, then the main gemstones described (their history plus nice colour photographs).
I would recommend this to all those who ask me for, "A simple book that just gives an idea about gemstones and what they look like". For the serious reader it also has a good introduction to gemmology.