The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary by Simon Winchester
One of the things I’ve been reading this week is The Professor and the Madman about two of the many makers behind the massive Oxford English Dictionary that took seventy years to compile. One of my coworkers asked me how I possibly have time to read these days. Basically, I love reading and don’t have cable so when its time to feed the kid, I read. I found this book on the library’s ebook site and got hooked by the title.
The parts about murder and paranoid insanity in Victorian England are interesting, but Winchester tends to use arcane words just because he can. I get that the book is about a dictionary, but I’m not convinced that it’s ever a good editorial move to use words that people are not going to know. I feel like it’s probably helping me up my Sunday crossword game though.