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4.4 out of 5 stars207
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 20 August 2001
What a fantastic book - what a brilliant concept. Hundreds of words simply wasting their time hanging around on signposts. Hundreds of objects, situations, states of mind etc. for which there are no words in common use.

Two quick examples...

Have you ever walked along a street, only to encounter someone coming in the opposite direction, at which point you engage in a little dance that involves both of you skipping from side to side, interspersed with apologies? You have? Droitwich!

Those bits you find in bacon, that you only actually discover when you bite on them and break your teeth...? Beccles!

As for seeing someone you recognise at the opposite end of a long corridor, and judging when is just precisely the right time to let them know you've seen them... well I'll leave that for you to find out yourself.

This is a great, great book. One you can come back to time and time again, and always find yourself sniggering, or laughing out loud, or sometimes just nodding sagely (with a smirk at your mouth!).

If anything, The Deeper Meaning of Liff is not quite as good as the original Meaning of Liff, the former being a thicker version of the latter (extended by using words hanging around on non-British signposts), but if you don't have the original, you might as well buy this. It can only be 5 stars! Fantastic!
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on 6 February 2003
It's the perfect book to carry around with you and pass the odd minute here or there, at the bus stop, waiting to be called at the doctors office, just as long as you don't mind peolple staring at you when you hit a really funny one and start smiling and laughing to yourself.
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on 21 November 2000
This book is a 'dictionary' of words for things or situations which there are no specific words yet. For example, Ipplepen - "A useless writing implement made by sellotaping 6 biros together which is supposed to make it easier to write 100 lines".
What makes this book totally brilliant and original is the shock of realisation that everything described in this book is totally familiar to us and yet we never give them a second thought. Until now. It is a book to be dipped into when you are tired of meandering through Middlemarch or bored of being bamboozled by Beckett, and you just want to put your brain in neutral. It's unashamedly light reading, but what of it. You pick it up and it makes you go 'ahhhh'. Douglas Adams's stamp is all over it - the book has a life of its own. Buy it NOW !
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on 12 March 1999
If you've ever wondered why there isn't a word for the "pleasant coolness on the reverse side of the pillow" or for "standing in the kitchen wondering what you came in here for", here's your solution. Douglas Adams and John Lloyd have come up with the ultimate guide to situations and things well known to most of us which have so far not been properly named. Get it! You won't regret it.
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on 24 March 2001
This book is a great companion when touring the country. Look again at all those boring road signs and look up the definitions that have been assigned to them. Never again will journeys be dull. Witty, hilarious and some just down right rude, this is the work of a warped mind and it's brilliant! One of the most tumbed books in my collection. Every "Hitch Hikers Guide" fan will love this and so will others new to Adams' work. Not yet met anyone who didn't appreciate it.
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on 2 November 2003
First read the original version on the York to London train in April 1984, and by Stevenage was reading it aloud to my half of the carriage. My four children have been brought up on scullets, duddos, aboynes, goosnarge, kent expressions and, of course, clixbys. I have frequently been threatened with matricide for being exessively spreakly, but have never been accused of a ditherington. My husband has a fondness for my budbys, and has had consirable experience of poonas. I've had plenty of episodes of silesia, been occasionally duntish after being extremely solent, endured many a hoylake, committed the occasional hidcote bartram and have often been observed kelling. I'm also very adept at losing things in fiunaries. Anyone who understands some - or most of this - is at least as sad as I am, but probably, also like me, has more fun in life than many people.. Now have a copy of the Deeper Meaning, but haven't learned as many new words now my family have grown & flown. I still think a runcorn could be an athletes affliction, slimbridge a dieter's scales, and saundersfoot the irritating tapping made someone who is enjoying the sort of music you can't stand! Maybe they'll be an Even Deeper Meaning of Liff?
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on 12 August 2001
Douglas Adams has already become famous with the Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy with it's really random approach to the world in his classic sci-fi humour. In the Deeper Meaning of Liff, Douglas teams up with John LLoyd to make the ultimate in random and true humour. If things that are funny becasue they're true are you thing, then you will instantly fall in love with this book. There is not a single page where there isn't at least one word that will set you bursting out with laughter. All words are place names from around the word and some words even have illustrations to go with them. What should really be known as the random bible, The Deeper Meaning of Liff is a collection of common objects or experiences for which there is no word for it and damn, is it funny or what? Even the little bit at the beginning about the preface reprints is hilarious. So why not sit back when your bored, get the Deeper Meaning of Liff off the shelves and prepare to be laughing for ages, therefore making it the worst book to take to places where you must be quiet. Genius.
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on 27 June 2001
A wonderful concept. Douglas Adams and John Lloyd used actual place names from the UK and beyond, and then assigned meanings to them for situations and descriptions of things that don't have a word in the English Language.
That descrition doesn't do it justice really, but a quick read of a few of the definitions at my local book shop had me convinced (You'll be lucky to find it at a local bookshop these days, so buy it here).
I'm a major fan of all of Douglas Adams work, and this ranks right up with the best of them. It isn't a story like the Hitch-hikers 'trilogy' or Dirk Gently books, but it just bursting with Douglas' unique brand of humour. I was truly helpless with laughter.
Fantastic!!
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on 25 November 1999
I'm now on my second copy having worn out the first. It's travelled with me throughout the world and made me laugh even on the most boring flights and in the most tedious airport. Can be used anywhere when you want to embarrass yourself by laughing out loud.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 4 July 2005
Quite simply one of the very cleverest books. Have you ever read a dictionary? Did you remember much? No?
Well, this effect extends to TMOL (The Meaning Of Liff), because it is a 'dictionary' like no other.
All those needed but un-named words that describe everyday situations (standing in the kitchen, wondering why you are there = "Woking") have been listed and described without coining a single word.
By re-using place names no new words have been created, only new meanings. Humorous meanings, mostly, although some are plain waspish! The authors take their revenge on people and places that have (presumably) given offence.
And the advantage of the dictionary format is that all this wisdom and humour can be read and re-read almost indefinitely, since it is (after all) so hard to remember things when you read a dictionary. This small book will pass time for ages, and every loo should have one. Also suitable for cars, boats, and (especially) light aircraft with luggage limits.
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