Sure, sharks are sexy – that’s why so many people watch Shark Week; to see all the muscular, sleek, and popularly-thought dangerous species depicted. But what about all the other members of the Class Chondrichthyes? The skates, rays, and those fascinatingly curious chimeras? Don’t they deserve a bit of attention as well?

Well, the chimeras are still seeking a champion of their own, but the recently published Rays of the World has the flat sharks now very well covered. Compiled as part of the multi-national Chondrichthyan Tree of Life Project, Cornell University Press‘ monumental new Rays of the World is the first complete compendium of all 26 families and 633 valid named species of rays (with due acknowledgment given to the fact that there are known to be dozens more still yet unidentified) from Pristidae (sawfish) to Mobulidae (devil rays).

Admittedly, it is a bit on the spendy side; however if you really want to gain an understanding of, as well as have ready information about, all the known but too seldom mentioned flat sharks of the world, this is an essential book to have on hand.