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The Liar's Dictionary: A Novel von Eley…
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The Liar's Dictionary: A Novel (Original 2020; 2021. Auflage)

von Eley Williams (Autor)

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3021666,221 (3.35)23
Mitglied:lafstern
Titel:The Liar's Dictionary: A Novel
Autoren:Eley Williams (Autor)
Info:Doubleday (2021), Edition: 1st Edition, 288 pages
Sammlungen:Deine Bibliothek
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Werk-Details

The Liar's Dictionary von Eley Williams (2020)

Kürzlich hinzugefügt vonprivate Bibliothek, elkiedee, sarahhepworth, sandpiper, -Eva-, santafereader, coho8, inpariswithyou, GeorgiaPublicLibrary, cmlowe
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This book has two storylines: In the early twentieth century, a social outcast works for Swansby's Encyclopedic Dictionary, writing definitions for words while tolerating bullying from his coworkers. He falls in love with a coworker's fiancée, and Wodehouse-worthy hijinks ensue. Meanwhile, in the current day, a young woman gets an internship at the same dictionary, which was never finished and is a financial failure, so she and the owner are digitizing it as a last effort to keep it alive. In the process, they discover that the dictionary is full of fake words. The intern is madly in love with her girlfriend, but is also in the closet and struggling with her public identity.

Both storylines take place over a few chaotic days, giving the book a frenetic energy. Williams' writing is utterly brilliant - I literally laughed out loud in the preface. The book toys with language and words in delightful ways.

As much as I adored this book, and as much fun as I had reading it, the end didn't quite come together as neatly as I wanted it to. I wish the characters had been able to make the connection between the two storylines. ( )
  Gwendydd | May 9, 2021 |
In alternating chapters set nearly a century apart, two sets of loves are chronicled. The first involves Peter, a falsely lisping lexicographer working on the letter ’S’ for Swansby’s Encyclopaedic Dictionary, and Sophia, a free-spirited Russian distantly related to the Tsar. The other love is between Mallory, working a long-term internship to digitize Swansby’s unfinished dictionary and Mallory’s love, Pip, who works at a coffee shop, doodles on her digits, and, as opposed to Mallory, is fully forthright about being out. The chapters are organized alphabetically with either real or mountweazel definitions of words from the dictionary. It is a clever structure that offers up the opportunity for a series of sometimes comic, sometimes painfully sweet set-pieces.

So far, so charming, but does a larger narrative arc emerge? Eventually, perhaps, but the two storylines remain fully separated and only loosely parallel. However, just as you begin to think that it’s all just a bit of contrived fun (with added wordplay), you may find yourself actually caring about each of these characters in their separate stories. That took me by surprise. Perhaps romance trumps cynicism after all.

Gently recommended for word lovers and those who enjoy a sweet read that isn’t necessarily saccharine. ( )
  RandyMetcalfe | May 6, 2021 |
Mallory is an intern for Swansby's dictionary where the heir, David, is attempting to digitize the dictionary and update entries despite the fact that Swansby's great claim to fame is that is was unfinished. Winceworth, 100 years ago, is one of the plodding lexicographers who worked to make the original dictionary. Each chapter brings readers back and forth in time following these two and they discover what is really important to them and find the freedom to be themselves.

This book, with its wordplay, riffs on dictionaries and changing language, and mountweazels scattered throughout, is very cleverly done. That, for me, was both its intriguing aspect and its downfall. I was so taken with the cleverness and paying attention to every word, that the characters were held at arms length and kind of lost in the weeds of the wittiness of it all. It's fun and goes down easy, but I wanted just a tad more. ( )
  bell7 | Apr 2, 2021 |
A joy of a book. It must have been great fun to write and it is fun to read.. The prose is precise and playful and with a reason tied to the story for being so.
  Capybara_99 | Mar 22, 2021 |
A delightfully absurd book about a dictionary – the (fictional) Swansby’s Encyclopaedic Dictionary to be exact. In it, a Victorian lexographer has taken the liberty of inserting completely bogus words into the work-in-progress dictionary and his modern day counterpart has been tasked with tracking those words down. Although that sounds a little dry The Liar's Dictionary is anything but. It's filled with lots of fun wordplay and is perfect for anyone who enjoyed Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries. ( )
  wandaly | Mar 18, 2021 |
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novel (n.), a small tale, generally of love from Samuel Johnson’s Dictionary of the English Language (1755) jung ftak (n.), a Persian bird, the male of which had only one wing, on the right side, and the female only one wing, on the left side; instead of the missing wings, the male had a hook of bone, and the female an eyelet of bone, and it was by uniting hook and eye that they were enabled to fly – each, when alone, had to remain on the ground from Webster’s Twentieth Century Dictionary of the English Language (1943)
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for Nell, too marvellous for words
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Let us imagine you possess a perfect personal dictionary.
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