Book Review: The Lexicologist’s Handbook by Dane Cobain


Pronunciation: Al-ee-ate-or-ee Type: Adjective
Definition: Dependent upon chance. This adjective is often applied to pieces

of art or literature that are affected by randomness.

Example: The poem was aleatory. The writer based the number of syllables on the results of a dice roll.”

Dane Cobain, The Lexicologist’s Handbook

Title: The Lexicologist’s Handbook: A Dictionary of Unusual Words
Author: Dane Cobain
Genres: Non-fiction, Linguistics
Pages: 405 (ebook)
Published: August 10th, 2021

My Rating: ★★★★★
Read: 4/26/2023


I can’t say I’ve ever sat down and read a dictionary from cover to cover before. The Lexicologist’s Handbook isn’t your run-of-the-mill dictionary overwhelming in length. The pages are full of the more fun words in the English vocabulary.

What I like most about this book is that the pronunciations are presented phonetically. Some words I knew had different pronunciations than I had always assumed. There were some new words I learned as well. The definitions are easy to read accompanied by their use in a sentence. I plan to revisit this book with a notebook sometime and write down the new words I learned.

A huge thanks to the author’s team for sending me a free copy of the book to read and review!

Likes & Dislikes:

What I liked:

  • Easy to decipher pronunciations. No fancy accented letters.
  • No lengthy definitions and overall to the point.

What I didn’t like:

  • I’d hoped for some more unique words. While there weren’t a bunch of simplistic words that you’d find in any dictionary, there were some that I personally find common. I suppose I assumed the majority of the book would be filled with words you’d almost never hear in everyday conversation.


This was a fun change of pace from the books I normally read. Very grateful for the opportunity!

Where to buy the book:

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