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Collecting and Classifying Coloured Diamonds: An Illustrated Study of the Aurora Collection Hardcover – April 1, 1998

7 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0965941013 ISBN-10: 0965941019 Edition: Digital Edition

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About the Author

Stephen Hofer began his career in the earth sciences in 1976 as a geophysicist at the University of Connecticut. He studied gemology at the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and the gemmological Association of Great Britain (GAGB), graduating with distinction.

In 1979 he accepted a position with the GIA Research Department, and since then he has devoted his career to the study of colored diamonds. In 1985 he became president of Colored Diamond Laboratory Services (CDLS), and currently operates a consulting service to the diamond industry.

He has lectured extensively on the subject of colour in diamonds, was one of sixty featured speakers at the 1981 International Gemological Symposium, has published numerous technical papers, and authored a quarterly column on coloured diamonds for New York Diamonds magazine. Mr. Hofer is an accomplished diamond cutter and a graduate of the American Institute of Diamond Cutting (AIDC).

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 742 pages
  • Publisher: Ashland Pr; Digital Edition edition (April 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0965941019
  • ISBN-13: 978-0965941013
  • Product Dimensions: 2.2 x 9.2 x 12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,817,170 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 23, 1999
Format: Hardcover
The most attractive parts are certainly the photography and the quality of the color printing. There are however a few disappointments. Firstly,under the chapter of the photos for the entire collection,one's appreciation can be marred by the reading of the so called Common Names for the diamonds which are by no means common.For readers who are not color diamond experts (and indeed even for those in the trade), such names could sometimes sound pompous. Secondly, the most widely adopted GIA color grading description is not used.I suppose somehow there is a temptionion for the author to preach and start his own system which could perhaps be understandable as 7 years of hard work has been done.Frequently, I still browse through the book, not so much because of the text,but because of the excellent colour photos. Overall,the author has still done a lot for the trade and introduced the wonderful color diamond world to the public.It is definitely a book I will treasure.For those who have been facinated by this book,they could be frustrated by the absence of sufficient materials on the subject.The way to quench one's thirst is to read the only other comprehensive book (a much thinner but with perhaps much more interesting and readable materials) by Harvey Harris.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dallas N. Davenport on February 24, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I have been aware of the Aurora Collection for 25+ years and was always amazed by it. Unfortunately,the collection raises more questions in one sitting than you can ever find answers for... until Hofer. Hofer is very likely the most knowledgeable person on earth when it comes to fancies, and his long-time association with Alan B and the Aurora collection has resulted in the most definitive book on the subject in print..
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Richard W. Wise on December 31, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Secrets of the Gem Trade: The Connoisseur's Guide to Precious Gemstones

In 1996, a fancy quarter carat red diamond sold at Christies for $326,800 per carat the equivalent of forty-six million dollars per ounce. The following year another sub-carater, a ninety-five point fancy purplish red sold for $928,315 per carat or one hundred forty-four million dollars per ounce. At this point any lingering doubts were erased, colored diamonds were not only the most expensive items on earth, their prices had entered outer space.

Stephen Hofer's book is the second and certainly the most comprehensive book on colored diamonds to appear in the past two decades. To call Hofer's book comprehensive is, in fact, something of an understatement. This tome, which weighs in the area of ten pounds, ranks not only a definitive treatment of colored diamonds it also contains one of the most interesting and relevant essays on the subject of color science as it relates to gemstones yet published.

The books major theme is a through-going study of the famous Aurora Collection of colored diamonds. Along the way Hofer also offers a logical new approach to colored diamond grading, a color classification system including a new short-hand system of notation and an excellent essay on gemstone lighting.

Had this book covered any one of these subjects as well as Hofer, it would be an important work. As it covers all of the above better than almost anyone has done before, it is a breathtaking tour de force.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr. L. Chard on August 4, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Although this seems like an expensive book, the fact that the large number of coloured diamonds are photographed so well, and rendered so accurately in the printed form is very impressive, especially to anyone who has ever tried to take high quality photographs of diamonds. It seets us a standard to attempt.

The book should also be a must for anybody thinking of "investing" in, collecting a=or aquiring any natural fancy coloured diamond.
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