This monograph will serve as the primary reference for species of the crustose lichen genus Rinodina in North America. Ninety six species are included, approximately one third of the estimated number that occur worldwide. Thirty six species are endemic to the continent, five of which are described as being new to science. Nine species are reported from North America for the first time.
The contents are divided into ten chapters, including accounts of the limits to the genus, species descriptions, species groups within the genus and phytogeographic considerations. One hundred and eighty three figures are included, the majority of which are either photomicrographs of spore structure or dot maps of distributions. Seven line drawings comprise the remainder of the figures. Two colour plates incorporate photographs of the thalli of sixteen representative species.
The book will be essential to scientists whose studies include the ecology of crustose lichens and to taxonomists interested in the lichenized Ascomycetes, to conservationists and to herbarium curators who have responsibility for collections of these groups. The monograph compliments other works on the saxicolous Rinodina species of Europe, the Old World, Australasia, and two others that include all species known from the Iberian Peninsula and Scandinavia. It makes Rinodina one of the better known of the large genera of crustaceous lichens. A potentially controversial hypothesis is that a few saxicolous species common to dry regions of western North America, southern Europe, North Africa and central Asia may date back 240 million years to the Middle Triassic.