This is such a treat simply because author is also narrator. He knows what he means and means what he knows. This is the real deal and what a true and extraordinary story.
Dr Milner of course. Why? Listen to this audiobook and you'll know why.
The madman of course, but was he really mad? Depends what you call mad.
Hell Redefined, a.k.a. American Civil War
Anyone who goes through what Dr. Milner had to in the Civil War and only ended up insane, should consider themselves rather lucky. This book puts the atrocities of war into some perspective. Such man's inhumanity to man had never crossed my mind. Then there is the author's scholarship which one can only but admire. Like I said, "the real deal."
The reader's voice was spot on. The use of British pronunciations (e.g. controversy) added to the sense of time and place.
The author took a potentially boring topic (the decades long creation of the new Oxford English Dictionary) and brought it to life through two characters: the editor and his most focused contributor.
A lovely history of the meticulous and loving process of compiling the grandest dictionary in humankind. the madman dr miner shows how contributions can come from anywhere and the value of giving people second chances. the story cannot be described as riveting as there is only so much a madman in a cell can accomplish but I credit the author for trying.
Yes, for people who love words and their origins, as well as a fascinating story beautifully told. The reader was worthy of the writer.
It shed light on a subject I know little about
All, he is a fantastic reader!
The Good – While I cannot say a book such as this is great, I can say this book is genuinely very good. Hence, four of five stars overall. This book sat lingering in my wish list for months while I poured through numerous books about various historical, scientific and other nonfiction topics. Then, I took another listen to the sample after being frustrated by a previous book. I was yearning to some learning and this seemed like it would do the job. It did. I finished this book in just over a day and a half. I did not want to put it down.
The Not So Good – It was too short for me although I’m not sure what could or should have been added. So that’s simply me being querulous. I’m also not a big fan of the author interview at the end of the book, but I’ve never been a fan of author interviews in any regard so that is admittedly a biased opinion.
The Bad – Nothing \ pronoun \ not anything; no single thing; \ they found nothing wrong
The Narration – Sublime \ adjective \ of such excellence, grandeur, or beauty as to inspire great admiration or awe.
The Overall - I truly enjoyed this book and didn’t want it to end. I learned many things, but most importantly I gained a new appreciation for the English language and how the original internet worked; paper, pen, envelope, post. We live in such an instant society today that this book made me appreciate the written word again. An ironic epiphany given that I’m listening so I can multitask which I cannot do when I read. If you’re a hardcore book reader/listener or you love learning new things, you need this book in your library. I’m off to try another book by Simon Winchester and to purchase a hardcopy of the OED and stop using Google for word definitions.
I enjoyed it, but best read in big chunks as it is a little to long. It is truly amazing how the dictionary was put together & this book is wonderfully researched. One more for history buffs who want every detail, but in my opinion could have been edited down. Saying that is still very interesting & truly amazing.
Hard to believe coincidences and unique characters that were involved in the making of the famous Oxford English Dictionary. And it is a historical record of the actual events that took place ! I believe that in order to be exceptional you have to be a little bit crazy.
I love to walk and run listening to audiobooks
The title says it all and this book delivers! The narrative is gripping. The protagonist sympathetic. The story of the OED's inception is Wikipedia-esque. The result? A mesmerising tale replete with excellent literary references, wonderful language and most importantly, a great story. This is a very good book for its style and content. Read it and you will enjoy it!