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Just entering the phrase "math or maths" into Google produces 35,800 hits while "maths or math" produces a further 30,200.

Probably some duplication there but that's a lot of words that people have written on the subject.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Geoff:
I'm a bit late in reading Guns, Germs, and Steel, but I've begun it. An amazing synthesis of many disciplines.

I enjoyed that one, Geoff. Maybe I'll go to goodreads to refresh my memory of it & see what critics had to add.
 
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I credit my book club with stretching my intellect. I've always been a bookworm, but pre-bookclub tended to follow my nose, sticking mostly w/favorite novelists (I've probably read 20 by Joyce Carol Oates) & researching ever-deeper in my narrow range of favorite topics. When I joined the group 20 yrs ago, the dozen ladies were mostly ex-pats. The proportion has dwindled to 1/4, but we still lean toward intl novelists & stories of the immigrant experience.

Latest two selections:

"The Sympathizer", 2016 Pulitzer Fiction by Viet Than Nguyen. Dense & multi-leveled eye-opener. Prose 'compared to Graham Greene and Saul Bellow': agreed, but his style is not 'like' anybody else's. Do try it. Sags near middle, but recovers.

"Submission" by Michel Houllebecq. Appealing-- to me, an oddball-- on many levels. Am reading it in French; the effort keeps me fully engaged, otherwise I might be put off by the gloomy protagonist. There's something adorably French here: a lit prof immersed to an absurd degree in the work of a minor literary figure (Huysmans)-- replete w/mordant uni gossip/ sketches & sad-sack sexual encounters-- & all the while, significant politico-cultural devpts are creeping up. Which reflects the arc of Huysmans' works.
 
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Bethree, I tried to get The Sympathizer in audio from my library but it is unavailable in that format. Frown


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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The audio book at the library of A Beautiful Mind finally became available. So, far it is interesting. Right now, I am learning that Princeton was THE place to be for those who wanted to do research in mathematics.


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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I'm halfway through "Schadenfreude, a Love Story: Me, the Germans, and 20 Years of Attempted Transformations, Unfortunate Miscommunications, and Humiliating Situations That Only They Have Words For" by Rebecca Shuman It's a biography of a teenager-young woman who really should have had her ass kicked early on. She exemplafies the term, Ugly American." Some humor in it, though.
 
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Long title! I have finally gotten around to reading "When the Spirit Catches You and You fall Down," a book about Hmong immigrants in California and one family's clash with the medical community. Especially being a nurse, it is quite enlightening to me.
 
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That sounds interesting, Kalleh. I just returned a book because I couldn't get into it. I periodically just stop reading or read something totally different, and at other times, I can't seem to get enough to read. I don't understand the rhyme or reason there.


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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I was talking to one of the dialysis nurses. We both read the Janet Evanovich Stephanie Plum series. We were both utterly disappointed with the last book. I am wondering if she even wrote it. So, a book NOT to read, Turbo Twenty-Three


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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Right now, I am fairly disgusted with Maryland's Digital Library. Most of the books mentioned in this thread that other people are reading, they don't have. So, I thought maybe you could all help me by telling me some of your favorite books of all time, and your favorites in classic literature, a must read list of sorts! Surely, the library has to have some of these. Thanks!


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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Well....

I think anyone here can tell you that my favourite of all time is Alice In Wonderland.

Among my sensibly adult fare I love the George MacDonald Fraser Flashman books. I'm a great fan of Sherlock Holmes - both the originals and any of the million and one pastiches.
Most things by Jules Verne and most things by HG Wells.
Quite partial to a bit of Graham Greene and also PG Wodehouse.

Hard to pin down specific titles from any of them though.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: BobHale,
 
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Silly as it may sound, my favorite is St-Exupery's The Little Prince.
 
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If you decided to go with Flashman you should read them in published order (even though that isn't the internal chronological order) and you shouldn't be put off by the first one as it's considerably weaker than the others. Fraser hadn't quite found the style. Also Royal Flash and Flashman and the Tiger are both good reads but don't have the firm placement in real history that make the others such fun.
 
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Flashman's "Who's Who entry". Big Grin

quote:
FLASHMAN, Harry Paget, Brigadier-general, VC, KCB, KCIE; Chevalier, Légion d'Honneur; US Medal of Honor; San Serafino Order of Purity and Truth, 4th Class. b.1822, s. H.Flashman, Esq, Ashby, and Hon.Alicia Paget; Educ. Rugby School: m. Elspeth Renie Morrison, d. Lord Paisley; one s., one d. Served Afghanistan, 1841-42 (medals, thanks of Parliament); Crimea (staff); India Mutiny (Lucknow, etc, VC); China, Taiping Rebelllion. Served US Army (major, Union forces, 1862); colonel (staff) Army of the Confederacy, 1863. Travelled extensively in military and civilian capacities; a.d.c. Emperor Maximilian of Mexico; milit. adviser, HM Queen Ranavalona of Madagascar; chief of staff to Rajan of Sarawak; dep.marshall, US. Chmn, Flashman and Bottomley Ltd; dir. British Opium Tradin Co; governor, Rugby School; hon.pres. Mission for the Reclamation of reduced Females. Publications: Dawns and Departures of a Soldier's Life; Twixt Cossack and Cannon; The Case Against Army Reform. Clubs: White's, United Service, Blackjack (Batavia).
Recreations: oriental studies, angling. Address: Gandamack Lodge, Ashby, Leics.
-------

Entry from the 1909 edition of Who's Who, reproduced in Flashman, p. 11, Pan edition 12th printing, 1979.
 
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One more thing... on no account watch the movie Royal Flash - it's terrible, the character is unrecognisable from the books.
 
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Thanks Bob and Geoff for both of your suggestions. I am surprised Bob, that I have actually read quite a few of the authors you recommended, a long time ago though. I haven't read the Flashman books. I will check to see if they are available.

I actually did listen to an audio book yesterday and today (actually day before yesterday and yesterday, now). It was by Jennifer Weiner titled, Who do you Love?. It follows the story of two children who meet at the age of eight at a hospital. They meet again in their teens and fall for each other. In both cases, they meet in places that are not their home towns. When they meet as teens, they keep in touch. After Rachel graduates, she meets Andy again during a layover in his home town.

Their on and off again relationship spans 30 years. They seem to be totally mismatched. She is the daughter of upper middle-class parents. He is the son of a working poor mother. She has a congenital heart disease and enjoys food, reading, and relaxing. He is an avid runner and health freak who doesn't like to read.

What they seem to have in common besides a strong attraction to each other is that somehow during most of their childhood, they were different. They didn't fit in with other kids, Rachel, because she was sick and in and out of hospitals and couldn't do certain activities as other children her age could. She had an over protective mother because of her health condition, even as she aged and her health improved. Andy didn't fit in because he was biracial, poor, and his mother discouraged his making friends (for reasons that becomes more apparent throughout the story).

They both have other relationships, failures in life, and learn difficult lessons. What I liked about this book was the story and the character development. They were both flawed and as I said before, made mistakes. However, the dialogue is not always the best. I have noticed this before in audio books. You become more aware of the "he said" "she said" syndrome. I don't think you catch that as much in a printed book in the same way you do in an audio book. I wonder if authors read their manuscripts aloud if they would catch more of that tendency and change it up a bit more.


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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If you go with the Flashman there are two other things...

Although I recommend reading them in order it doesn't actually matter - they refer to each other but only incidentally. You can read whichever they have. Also, you might get a background to the character by reading Tom Brown's Schooldays in which he originally appeared.
 
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Bob, I was surprised that Maryland's Digital eLibrary Consortium doesn't have any of the Flashman books. Geoff, they don't have your recommendation, either! Go figure. I don't drive anymore (vision's too poor). So, I almost never get to the brick and mortar library. I could probably get some of these in regular book form if I did. Thanks anyway for the suggestions!


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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I enjoyed these books:

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The help by Kathryn Stockett
One Moment, One Morning by Sarah Rayner
Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin
 
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Thanks tinman! I know my library has two of the books you mention. I am busy and won't be starting a book this week, but maybe next week, if one of them is available, I will borrow it.


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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For little girls, I hear this book is marvelous.
 
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Kalleh, this looks like a great book and I think I will pick it up sometime for my great niece. Thanks for sharing it!


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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Last month, my book club read "Submission" by Michel Houllebcq. I read it in the original French (as a long-ago FrLit major, SpanLitminor, I read any Fr or Sp selections in the original text). I highly recommend this book for Americans! It's quasi-sci-fi, written in 2015 as tho 2017 elections had included a fictional Muslim-Brotherhood-type party, which thro credible machinations became the winning party-- & shows how life might have gone from there, for the passive 'lib' Sorbonne prof protaganist. Acerbic, satirical, thought-provoking.

This month we read "The Green Road," by Irish writer Anne Enright. A well-wriiten, fascinating character-study of a family.
 
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Your recent book looks interesting Bethree. So I am almost sure my library won't have it! LOL

I have been listening to a series by Elin Hilderbrand. I am also listening to The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World by the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu. I would highly recommend this book, and ordered the large print version for myself.


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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Hey, B35, I just started "Submission." Alas, my French isn't good enough to read it in the original, but the English version builds tension early on very well. So far, it's a great read!
 
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Just finished "Submission" PM me with your take on it, please.
 
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Just started Promethian Ethics by Garrett Hardin. A very hard-nosed analysis of the ethics behind our beliefs about life and death.
Back to my usual non-fiction.
 
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About to read Leslie Stahl's book on being a new grandma. Looking forward to it!
 
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Grandparents have the advantage of giving the kids back when they're tired, unlike parents. That is, grandchildren are revenge on your children for what they put you through. Wink
 
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Yes!

I also bought Vivian (for when she is older) Chelsea Clinton's new book. The Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls is really hot now. Of course my daughter has that.
 
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BTW, forgot to mention I am putting in time between book-club selections with "White Trash: the 400-year untold history of class in America"

Don't get me wrong, it's fascinating & highly readable. I just have a hard time sticking w/non-fiction (it's so easy to put down 'til later, unlike a good novel). I find the subject engrossing, so will keep at it.

I'm seeing that most everything one learns about why 'white trash" culture is endemic & lasts for many generations applies as well to the culture of black poverty-- the historical circumstances are different, but the key factors are the same. Makes you start thinking, maybe our endemic US issues are actually more about class than about race.
 
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You and I are opposites, Bethree5, in that I usually find non-fiction, when well- presented, to be more engrossing than most fiction. Really good fiction is different. I read non-fiction 3 to 1 over fiction. I do, however, read all the short stories in The Sun magazine. http://thesunmagazine.org/
 
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Reading nothing right now. I am mostly listening to about hour long talks online and trying to keep up with the news.


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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Our April book-club read was "Longbourn," by Jo Baker. Highly recommend! It was billed as the 'Downstairs' [i.e., servants' view] of Pride & Prejudice. I, perhaps snobbishly, spurn books based on other books, so I put that info out of mind-- actually forgot it-- & just read it as its own novel. About 2/3 of the way thro, registered the name 'Mr Darcy', & scanned a plot summary of P&P (which I hadn't read in 50 yrs & never watched BBC/ movie versions). Was delighted to confirm: a prior reading of P&P is not required at all-- that plot floats above this one like a distant echo. Things that happen in P&P (like trips to other estates, visits to London, marriage plots/ engagements)-- are registered Downstairs only in terms of the extra work/ work-arounds that must be machinated to keep Upstairs happy.

Meanwhile, the joy of this book for me was what I love about any historical novel: disappearing into an out-of-time, out-of-mind era-- in this case, very-early-1800's servant/ soldier class in a tiny rural village 20 mis from London, during the Napoleonic wars.
 
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I've been reading and studying raptly my inflated cable bill


Give a man a fish and he can eat for one day; give a man a fishing pole and he will find an excuse to never work again.
Nollidj is power.
 
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I've been reading the labels on pill bottles. Also started reading, Coal by Barbara Freese. It traces the human use of coal throughout history, from boon to bane.

Proof, we have no access to cable, so rely on an antenna, or aerial, or whatever one calls it nowadays. A hundred bucks up front and that's all.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Geoff:
You and I are opposites, Bethree5, in that I usually find non-fiction, when well- presented, to be more engrossing than most fiction. Really good fiction is different. I read non-fiction 3 to 1 over fiction. I do, however, read all the short stories in The Sun magazine. http://thesunmagazine.org/


Glad to know you like short stories. I will follow your link soon. To me, this is the most demanding genre [of writers] & perhaps the most rewarding for readers. Have you read much of this genre? I'm thinking classics like O'Henry, Sherwood Anderson, Chekhov, Pushkin, Gogol -- but also some very fine contemporary short-stories by Cheever, JC Oates, Alice Munro? & many others I can't bring to mind at this moment.
 
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some very fine contemporary short-stories by Cheever,

Seinfeld ruined him for me.


Give a man a fish and he can eat for one day; give a man a fishing pole and he will find an excuse to never work again.
Nollidj is power.
 
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My current book-club read is "Round House" by Louise Erdrich. I recommended it to the group, having noted this novel won the National Book Award in 2012. I suspected they would go for it: I've been w/this group for over 20 yrs, & in early days we read several of her novels w/ their intertwined characters.

I have been following this author since the '80's. She is 1/2 Ojibwe/Chippewa [NW US], and all her stories/ novels follow the contemporary experience of those tribes. These are grittily realistic novels of the contemporary Native-American experience, many of which, by way of background, delve into the 19th-early-20th-C history of fed restriction to the reservation & mandated Catholic instruction, often involving separation of children [from parents] into convent-run boarding-schools.

This particular novel was a difficult transition for me: tho the life of Longbourn servants (in our bookclub's just prior read - ca early-1800's England) was also challenging & gritty, the characters were protected by their social structure & had much compensating beauty of rural environment-- even the soldier [Napoleonice Wars] deserted by his army found succor amongst the Spanish natives along the beautiful Atlantic coast. But these native-American folks by contrast have only their tribal/ familial/ cultural relationships to protect them from powerful outsiders-- w/little compensating surroundings, which are basically desert/ poverty-stricken villages/ strip-malls.

What makes one keep reading an Erdrich novel? It's just that the characters are so real, one can't help but identify w/them, & keep going to see how it all turns out.
 
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I love Anne Tyler because of her characters. I've read all of hers - though in just looking her up, I realize that I missed the 2016 Vinegar Girl. I am getting it! Has anyone read it?
 
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Oh my gosh, Kalleh, I admired Ann Tyler in the '80's, but stopped reading her in the early '90's because I found her such a downer. Even tho I loved her Hemingwayesque conservation of words conveying maximum impact. I respect your perseverance. Where do you suggest I pick her up again?
 
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Kalleh: I have to ask, now that you have revealed yourself as a Tyler fan: do you like Joyce Carol Oates? I have read most of her stuff since she appeared on the scene in the '70's. But my book-club friends seldom agree to pursue her [the last time was 'We were the Mulvaneys' in 2002]-- they find her 'a downer'!
 
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Wow - I do not like downer books, but really like Anne Tyler. I think it might be because I focus on the characters so much. I'll have to read Joyce Carol Oates again - haven't for awhile. I remember liking her, but again I don't like downer books.

I have read every single Anne Tyler book and think any one you pick up would be good. They seem so humanistic and authentic to me. Perhaps some consider them downers because they are realistic and life isn't perfect. Unfortunately Amazon messed up my order and I still haven't received it. I read her books so quickly and then am sad because I know it will be awhile before the next one.
 
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Kalleh and Bethree, have either of you read Elin Hilderbrand or Debbie Macomber? I don't think either of their books are downers, but they may not be as interesting to you. Sometimes, you want a light read, though, and I think they fit the bill.


"Wishing in gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease." ~from the Metta Sutta
 
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My book finally came! Cannot wait to read it.

Has anyone read the Hamilton book? I just saw the musical and would like to read the book.
 
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I loved "Vinegar Girl." It was a typical Anne Tyler, with excellent characters. And I don't think anyone would call this one a downer. It's a fast read, and I'd highly recommend it.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Kalleh:
Wow - I do not like downer books, but really like Anne Tyler. I think it might be because I focus on the characters so much. I'll have to read Joyce Carol Oates again - haven't for awhile. I remember liking her, but again I don't like downer books.

I have read every single Anne Tyler book and think any one you pick up would be good. They seem so humanistic and authentic to me. Perhaps some consider them downers because they are realistic and life isn't perfect. Unfortunately Amazon messed up my order and I still haven't received it. I read her books so quickly and then am sad because I know it will be awhile before the next one.


You might like JCOates, then, Kalleh. Like Tyler, she is just about realism. And I will go back & try Tyler again, because I love realism. [Do you like Joan Didion as well? I do.]

Truth be told what I love about JCOates is her realistic take on upstate-NY (where I was raised.) I didn't even get that at first: discovered her in '70's when I was living in MI, & she was living/ teaching/ writing about MI. I relocated to NYC, kept reading her, & went to a reading she did at the 92nd-St Y. I teared up as soon as she started speaking-- in my dialect! & soon realized that most of what she writes is placed squarely in my wheelhouse.
 
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After 'Longbourne' and 'The Round House', my book club selected "Ties"

This is an Italian novel by Domenico Starnone, called "Lacci" in Italian.

This is a special book. Here is the review I wrote on goodreads.com:

This is a must-read for fans of realistic depiction of love and family relationship. Pared here to the core: a mere three chapters, similar to a tiny group of interrelated short-stories, each told by a different family-member, casting light on the other narratives. I will not call them 'unreliable narrators', because each has his truth. And each one's truth has been shaped by the other's truths. There is an unassailable logic here, & frank depiction of how the previous generation's truth shapes the next. Lahiri's [the translator's] introduction depicts the stories as 'Chinese boxes' similar to Russian dolls. I see also an element of those reflected images-within-images: with just what little is presented here, we can easily speculate on the nature of the parental relationships which shaped the personalities of the main couple, & speculate on the parental relationships to follow in the third generation to come.

As a person who was once a young woman whose [first] spouse inexplicably [to me] wandered from a longtime marriage, I found the first chapter startlingly realistic and recognizable. I could have written those letters myself, & had many a similar head-banging conversation w/the wavering spouse, demanding explanations, presenting pragmatic persuaions, always convinced that repairs could be made, stubbornly unwilling to face the obvious emotional realities. And he, like Aldo in chapter 2, was equally removed from emotional reality, waffling between one sort of love and another, drawn to and repelled from 'commitment'. We were of that same generation, in the '70's pulled toward individual fulfillment, unsure that that could be accommodated within socially-normed structure.

...But... we didn't have kids! Which makes this story a nightmarish "what-if." It is frightening to think, yet perhaps plausible, that at 30-ish-- me, feeling betrayed & righteous-- & he, feeling trapped & able to justify/ compartmentalize a separate life-- would have imprinted such atrocities of emotional distress on our kids. The third chapter follows with inexorable logic.
 
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I'm currently reading Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries, by Kory Stamper (M-W lexicographer), published March 14, 2017 by Pantheon Books. I'm about half-way through the book and it's been a sheer delight. I checked it out from the library as I usually do, but this is one book I'll probably end up buying.

quote:
Table Of Contents

Preface xi

HRAFNKELL: On Falling in Love 3
BUT: On Grammar 23
IT’S: On “Grammar” 38
IRREGARDLESS: On Wrong Words 52
CORPUS: On Collecting the Bones 68
SURFBOARD: On Defining 94
PRAGMATIC: On Examples 125
TAKE: On Small Words 136
BITCH: On Bad Words 149
POSH: On Etymology and Linguistic Originalism 169
AMERICAN DREAM: On Dates 189
NUCLEAR: On Pronunciation 199
NUDE: On Correspondence 216
MARRIAGE: On Authority and the Dictionary 230
EPILOGUE: The Damnedest Thing 255

Acknowledgments 263
Notes 265
Bibliography 275
Index 281


M-W has a video series called "Ask the Editor." Here's the one on irregardless.
Here is a transcript.
 
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And, Sattva, Maryland's Digital Library does have Word by word: the secret life of dictionaries. Notice that the title of the book is Word by Word but the cover lists it as Word By Word.
 
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