13 June 2007

The Professor and the Madman

So, I wasn't going to read any more Simon Winchester. But people kept recommending The Professor and the Madman about the OED and since it is shorter than a lot of his books, I read it. And surprisingly, I wasn't thoroughly disappointed. I even finished it, a first for a Simon Winchester.

I did skip some parts, but not too many. I was also generally impressed with the respectful tone of Winchester's writing. Too many authors use horrifying details like those briefly described in this book to shock and somehow use the victims of these horrors to sell their books. Winchester rarely does this even though he easily could have centered the book around it.

I might even recommend this one since the editors seem to have gotten to this book before it was released. Or maybe my expectations were so very low that anything better than Winchester's usual fare would seem brilliant.

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