Spiders of India, edited by P A Sebastian and K V Peter is a welcome addition to the Natural History books in our country. Given the average person's aversion to creepy-crawlies, arachnophobia is way more common than a love of spiders, but thats whats needed to carry out this detailed a study.

"The first part of the book looks at the morphology and anatomy of spiders, as well as systematics and evolution. The second part provides detailed descriptions of selected species. The book also contains, importantly, a decisive and updated checklist of the 1,520 spiders which have been described from India. It is richly illustrated with line drawings and diagrams, and more than 150 colour photographs, many documented for the first time. "

Universities Press, Hyderabad, plays an important role in academic publishing. We have, in earlier posts, bemoaned the lack of a strong publishing programme within the Indian university system. As publishers, Universities Press are both proactive and generous. And independent, while being commercial. These are difficult balls to juggle, but they do well, and bring valuable and affordable books to the reading public.

In Hardcover, 734 pages, Rs 795. ISBN: 9788173716146