Saturday, April 10, 2010

What's in a Word? by Webb Garrison - Book Review

I'm a total nerd when it comes to vocabulary.  I was the kid who would read the dictionary for fun.  I was the one who studied Latin and delighted in seeing the relationships between Latin roots and English words.  And I'm still that way:  I love to expand my vocabulary, to play with words, and to learn the history of words and expressions.  That's where this book comes in:  What's in a Word? by Webb Garrison explains the origin of more than 350 everyday words and phrases.

That said, this isn't my favorite book of this type.  While the book contains a wealth of fascinating information, I found its organization slightly frustrating.  The stories are grouped into categories such as "Household" and "Legal Talk," instead of arranged alphabetically.  As a result, it makes interesting reading but not a good reference.

Publisher's description:
Have you ever woken up on the wrong side of the bed? Did you make it to that early morning meeting by the skin of your teeth? Was your heart in the right place when you proposed that idea, even though you couldn’t hold a candle to the guy next to you who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth?

If you’ve ever wondered what that word or phrase you just heard means, What’s in a Word? is just the book for you. If you love words, this fascinating and humorous encyclopedia of more than three hundred fifty words and phrases and how they evolved will keep you entertained for hours.
Learn more about What's in a Word? at the Thomas Nelson product page, where you can also find links to purchase the book.

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book, at no cost to me, for review purposes.  Thanks to Thomas Nelson and BookSneeze for the opportunity.

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