The Dictionary of Difficult Words

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 30 May 2019

Member Reviews

4★
“SESQUIPEDALIAN
If someone is sesquipedalian, they know a lot of big words and they love using them.”

This is fun and useful and a good conversation or game starter. You will no doubt find a word you didn’t know, but I will say that a few I didn’t know weren’t in Lexico, the Oxford Dictionary online, so I don’t feel so bad! I found them elsewhere as obsolete.

Lots of simple words make the list. Here’s what a whole double page looks like. This one is about how words work.
[My Goodreads review shows an illustration.]

The first page explains some parts of speech.
[My Goodreads review shows an illustration.]

The next one explains how to figure out meanings.
[My Goodreads review shows an illustration.]

Mostly they are good simple definitions and/or explanations of the word along with illustrations for many. I disagree with a few definitions, but really, who am I to complain?

And I found a few terrific ones I can’t wait to use!

KAKISTOCRACY – a government ruled by the worst people.” It kind of rhymes with aristocracy.

How about that for a great word, eh? I expect to see it in political headlines any day now.

One of my favourite punctuation marks makes the list.

Interrobang ‽. It’s a combination of a question mark and an exclamation point that you use when you combine excitement with a question, like “Did I really win the lottery?!” I usually write it like that, one after the other, but there is html code for it. If you ever need it here, without spaces, it’s & # 8 2 5 3

I was also unaware there is such a thing as the study of animals that people think might not be real (unicorns, mermaids, Nessie). That’s cryptozoology. They’ve been a part of so many stories forever that it seems nobody can say definitively that they aren’t or weren’t ever real. I’d just recommend you don’t try to hit anyone up for a grant to study them. But who knows‽

[My Goodreads review shows an illustration.]

Thanks to NetGalley and Quarto Publishing for the digital preview copy from which I’ve selected a few of the many illustrations.
Was this review helpful?
I will definitely be buying this book for my kiddos. Don't let the title fool you! It's laid out very nicely and makes learning very interesting. Get this book for your kiddos! I highly recommend it!
Was this review helpful?
This book is ideal for kids who love burying their heads into a dictionary looking for new words to add their vocabulary. This dictionary is invigorating and visually attractive. For me, many words I had already known but since this is meant for young learners, I'm impressed those words were include included. The Graphic design of the book will definitely attract young readers to this book making it their go-to word bank.
Was this review helpful?
Hellooooooo Gorgeous! 

I am so glad I purchased ‘The Dictionary of Difficult Words’ by Jane Solomon - even after receiving a free digital copy from NetGalley. This thing is large (as dictionaries should be) and so colorful! It will call out to children from the shelves and no one will need to convince them to open it.  

I know a lot of words - seems to be what happens when you’re an avid reader – and there was *at least* one word on every page that I did NOT know! But that’s what makes it fun, right! My boys and I laughed and laughed as we tried to pronounce words that no one in our house knew. (...never hurts to start ‘em young when building a strong vocabulary.)

I also really appreciated that Solomon did such an effective job describing *how* to use a dictionary. Let’s be honest, folks... Most kids in this {digital} day and age basically just ask Alexa what a word means. Heck, all I have to do is touch a word on my Kindle or right-click on my laptop if I don’t know what something means. But she so beautifully explains that there is no wrong way to read this book, what the parts of speech mean, and how prefixes and suffixes can help figure out a word’s meaning. Fantastic idea for those new to these types of concepts...

But don’t feel like this book is too serious and scholarly! Louise Lockhart, illustrator & living alliteration, has created a colorful, silly, and oh so appealing book for the younger set.  From animals in arid climates to a redonk zedonk, Lockhart brings the craziest, most unintelligible words to life and helps the reader understand words through her visual clues and illustrations. 

High praises for this beauty - Five Stars!

A big Thank You to NetGalley and Francis Lincoln/Quarto Publishing for this digital copy to read & review!
Was this review helpful?
For the most part - I absolutely adored this book! The illustrations are amazing, creative and a lot of fun. The words chosen for this dictionary are inspiring. You can open the book at a random page, read just one word and be inspired to create a thousand things or simply dream about the word.

The definitions however... they need some work. Some word I still did not know even after reading the definition...
Was this review helpful?
The Dictionary of Difficult Words by Jane Solomon teaches young logophiles how to work out what new words mean and how to say them. There are 400 fun words to improve vocabulary. Each has a pronunciation and definition. Many of the words have cute little illustrations, and some get larger extra illustrations that further explain the definition. These are bubbled in colour. Some of my fave included bellwether, Clowder, defenestrate, frabjous, kakistocracy, petrichor, and thigmotropism. I was quite impressed with the breadth of the words collected here! My cubs also read this and most enjoyed it. Others are less interested in language. Haha. 

***Many thanks to Netgalley and Quarto Publishing for providing an egalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Was this review helpful?
This is actually relevant to a project I want to do in the library in the coming school year. Definitely need to see about getting a copy!

First of all, this book is lavishly illustrated. I LOVE good illustrations, and you can expect a full page spread for each letter of the alphabet. It's such a delightful and creative dictionary!

Now, it doesn't have every word ever. It's not that kind of dictionary. Rather, it introduces kids to a handful of fancier words, ones that they can use in everyday conversations. Definitions are concise and easy to understand, and usually provide an example of how to use the word. My only complaint is that there aren't more words, but hey that could be a whole 'nother book!
Was this review helpful?
The Dictionary of Difficult Words: With More Than 400 Perplexing Words to Test your Wits! was written by Jane Solomon and illustrated by Louise Lockhart. ​What is a bumbershoot? Or a moonbow? And what does it mean when someone absquatulates? Find out all this and more in the Dictionary of Difficult Words. Test your knowledge with more than 400 words to amaze, confuse, and inspire budding wordsmiths (and adults). All of the words featured in this book are difficult to spell, hard to say, and their meanings are obscure to most children (and most adults)! Written with simple, easy-to-understand definitions by lexicographer Jane Solomon, this dictionary celebrates the beauty of the English language for family trivia time spent around the printed page.

The Dictionary of Difficult Words is a fun, educational, and useful book for all ages. I love that the book starts off explaining the various ways readers can explore and enjoy the book. In the beginning there are also great explanations about kinds of words and how to decode intimidating words and how to pronounce them. These are things that will always be helpful, even if I know I mentally mispronounce things all the time- especially if I have only read them and never heard them spoken. I love the words that were chosen for this book. Some are adjectives and adverbs that are used sparingly, but are just great words. Some are just fun to say, like bumbershoot (which I proudly already knew the definition for). I learned a few new words, and am trying to figure out how to use bildungsroman instead of coming of age tale in a book review without sounding pretentious.  The artwork is fun and adds extra layers of understanding, fun, and style to the book.  

The Dictionary of Difficult Words is a great book to have in home, school, and public libraries. It can help teach the use and functionality of dictionaries, and get readers to broaden their personal vocabulary in fun ways. This book is a win all around, and I think I need to add it to my personal collection.
Was this review helpful?
I received this e-book ARC of The Dictionary of Difficult Words through Net Galley from Quarto Publishing Group - Frances Lincoln Children's Books in exchange for a truthful review.

This book is FRABJOUS! I think the ARC I received included only about half of the pages, but I would definitely seek out this book for purchase. The layout was fun and engaging with pronunciations and interesting graphics accompanying the difficult words.

I also enjoyed the end notes which explained the use/history of THEY as a singular pronoun and also the discussion on how ALL words are real.
Was this review helpful?
This was fun to read. I think that this is a great resource for writers that want to learn a more diverse knowledge of words. Thank  you NetGalley for allowing me to read this book.
Was this review helpful?
This was a beautifully illustrated book that would make anyone interested in learning something new. I loved the challenge of trying to describe the words before reading the definition.
Was this review helpful?
The Dictionary of Difficult Words is a fun, colorful resource. It begins with explaining in a fun way what a dictionary is, and then how to use the book (really, any way you wish!), and then gives a brief overview of parts of speech, and figuring out what some words mean without the definition next to it. This presents difficult words in a fun, approachable way that isn't as intimidating as, say, a Webster's dictionary. Illustrations are used throughout to help illustrate some of the words. Each letter of the alphabet has about two pages worth of words and illustrations. Some words seem everyday or common (like void), and others I learned from this book (like uliginous). 

The whole thing is wonderful.
Was this review helpful?
Frances Lincoln Children's Books and NetGalley provided me with an electronic copy of The Dictionary of Difficult Words.  I was under no obligation to review this book and my opinion is freely given.

Although the formatting of the book gives readers the impression that this is a children's book, adults will also benefit from this dictionary of SAT type words.  Parents will enjoy learning along with their children, especially as the author has included the parts of speech and the phonetic spelling.  Besides including small drawings for many of the words, the author has chosen to highlight some with full page whimsical representations.

The author has included some helpful information at the beginning of the book, giving tips to the successful reading of this book, explanations of parts of speech, and hints about determining the meaning of certain words.  The presentation of the words is brilliantly designed to not cause anxiety over learning something that may be considered as difficult.  I would definitely recommend The Dictionary of Difficult Words to parents, educators, and children alike.
Was this review helpful?
The dictionary is the most underutilized resource in the English classroom. The Dictionary of Difficult Words, however, is definitely one dictionary that is sure to be picked up countless times with enthusiasm by students from middle grade to high school. 

From the first page, I was invested. Not only does it include some pretty interesting words but it also includes some educational notes on suffixes and parts of speech. There were a few words (for example xylophone and knack) that seemed out of place amongst the more difficult and intriguing words that ranged from bailiwick and ennui to schadenfreude and whippersnapper.

Overall, this is one book that I would not only list as a classroom must have but also as a must read for children and adults.
Was this review helpful?
An illustrated dictionary of words that you are likely to come across in books and poems from 100+ years ago that are still popular, science books, mythology, history, the SAT, and other very random places.

This is a fantastic resource not only for the curious kid or adult, but also for those reading classic literature, high schoolers studying for the SAT, those aiming to build their vocabulary, and general word lovers. I consider myself pretty well-read, I like old classics, I’ve taught science, I taught crazy vocabulary to students preparing for the SAT (before the most recent revisions to cut down on the crazy vocabulary), and there were still several words in here I had never come across before. There are several that I now want to start using in conversations and writing (For example, ‘Excuse me while I darkle my phone screen.’ ‘I come from a family of ailurophiles.’ ‘That was a ridiculously gonzo news story.’ ‘I have to renew my teaching license every quinquennium.’) And I like that it is just 100 pages so it isn’t overwhelming. Readers of all ages can benefit from this book whether as a resource to have on hand or something to sit down and read in bits and pieces or straight through. Definitely getting a copy for both our Elementary and Secondary libraries. Highly recommended.

I received an ARC of this title from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
This book is fun for both young and old.
It would be a great way to get kinds interested in reading and in the English language.
I liked the drawings and think this would be a fun and funny interactive read for kids.
Was this review helpful?
This book is the #1 new release in children's dictionaries on Amazon.  The cover itself is a sight to behold and very classy.  It is a large hardback with an embossed title and beautiful texture.  The illustrations are kid-friendly and fun.  Each page displays multiple drawings or collages that adds much interest to the reader. Lists of words from A to Z are  brilliantly presented by lexicographer Jane Solomon. 

Kids will love and appreciate the science, nature, feelings, emotions and language words that adorn the book.  More than 400 difficult words to pronounce and spell are documented with easy to understand meanings that will intrigue both the young and the old alike.  I know I bumped into many that I was not familiar with.  

This delightful book should not only be in every home but in every classroom and library.  It would make a perfect year-end gift to give to a teacher.   It truly is a celebration of words and our amazing language.  Who knew learning big words could be so much fun?   I highly, highly recommend this book.
Was this review helpful?
This is a great dictionary of interesting words. Some of the words are obscure, but I could see a older elementary student enjoy reading this cover to cover. I definitely want to add this to my classroom.
Was this review helpful?
As a teacher of gifted learners, this book was PERFECT! We are always challenged to find them new vocabulary words and encourage them to grow their language abilities. The Dictionary of Difficult Words will be perfect for our word-a-day moments and for those children who just love words. I already ordered it!
Was this review helpful?
A beautifully illustrated graphic novel that was able to combine a compelling narrative with excellent illustrations and character arcs.
Was this review helpful?