Wednesday, 26 November 2008

REVIEW:- Susie Dent – Words of the Year

Publ: 2008, Oxford University Press
My own book
ISBN: 978-0-19-955199-6
Genre: Non-fiction – English Language (422)
Pages: 148
Rating: ***** ***

This book is Susie Dent’s selection of words that were either new to the English Language during the year or had new meanings or simply regained popularity as a result of current events. I bought it for myself as part of the Amazon voucher which Bryony and Mark gave me for my birthday. Unusually, I bought it ‘on speck’ not having seen it in a bookshop or library and without any previous knowledge of Susie Dent. It proved to be a good choice and one I would thoroughly recommend to anyone with an interest in the way our language is progressed. On its more basic level, it is, of course, a sort of addendum to one’s dictionaries.

She explains why she has chosen each word and in many cases lists related words which have come into popular usage because of the same circumstances. There are a whole host of words to be found here in categories as diverse as humour (like Earmarxist); scientific (Exoplanet); computing (Facebook); gaming (Exergame); politics (Cleggover); and current affairs (Arguido and Funt). A few of my favourites, selected from “Words of the Year” will appear on my Word blog.

SUSIE DENT is the author of The Language Report and her research is supported by Oxford’s celebrated dictionary programme. She was formerly Editorial Director at Oxford University Press before becoming an independent editor and translator. Born on 21st September 1967, Susie Dent is probably best known as a Lexicographer, in "The Dictionary Corner" on Channel 4's afternoon quiz show "Countdown" since 1992.

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