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on 3 May 2002
Finding rhymes by phonetics is something you will appreciate in time, and it really isn't all that hard, even for foreigners like myself. The book is large, well-structured, and has a lot of what we are all looking for: Rhymes. Unfortunately, the rhymes are US English rhymes, which means:
1. Wrong phonetics for some words. Try as you might with your British ear, "fire" is not where it's supposed to be.
2. Some words are listed as rhymes that simply don't rhyme in UK English.
3. Some UK English rhymes are listed as non-rhymes, like "forge" and "gorge".
But this is of course a problem with all US made rhyming dictionaries. If you are a US buyer, there is no reason for you not to buy the book.
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VINE VOICEon 4 July 2005
Ogden never needed a book to help him rhyme. But we mortals can use some help occasionally. This is more than just a dictionary; it explains several elements to poetry. They call it the Poet's Craft Book. This is not the only book and I am not about to compare, as this is a five star book in its own right. It is well organized and easy to follow.
If you are a pseudo poet then alas, one day this book may cover your (look it up)
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on 7 August 2012
I have both the Penguin Rhyming Dictionary and the Complete Rhyming Dictionary and they're each useful in their own way.

The strengths of the Penguin Rhyming Dictionary are:
If you know the word you want to rhyme, you look up that word in the index then find the section containing rhymes for that word;
The rhyme lists are large and relatively comprehensive.

The weaknesses of the Penguin Rhyming Dictionary are:
There appears to be no obvious organisation of the rhyming section. Rhymes are not organised so that all rhymes beginning -A, -E, -I are in order, and masculine and feminine rhymes are all jumbled up together. This means that it is difficult to use the rhyming section without first referring to the index. If you only have a couple of words to look up that's OK, but if you're looking for a large number of rhymes (or are looking for family rhymes) this quickly becomes time-consuming and, ultimately, tiresome.

There is the occasional pointlessly expanded list of compound words. -ity being a case in point. It would take far less paper and be clearer to make a note for words ending in -ual, -ial, -il that -ity can be appended where appropriate.

The paperback version of the book has a tendency to fall to pieces: I've had mine for 6 weeks now and the first pages are already falling out.

The strengths of the Complete Rhyming Dictionary are:
The rhyming section of the dictionary are split into masculine rhymes and feminine rhymes and organised by phonetic sound within each section. This makes it easier to find rhymes by scanning the rhyming section, and to find family rhymes.

There aren't as many pointlessly expanded lists of words - words tend to be reduced to a basic stub with a note that they can be expanded using various suffixes.

The weaknesses of the Complete Rhyming Dictionary are:
There is no word index. If you don't know how find the phonetic sound you want you're scuppered. Personally I didn't find this much of a problem - it took me about 5 minutes to learn the sounds specified in the index and begin using the dictionary in anger - but this might not be the case for other people.

It's an American book. Although I didn't have any trouble finding "Fire" (it's in the same list as Aspire, Rewire and other words rhyming -'R) there are pronunciation differences between British and American English to do with which syllables are stressed in multi-syllable words: You say adúlt, we say ádult, you say díctate, we say dictáte. This occasionally causes a word the British would put in the masculine rhyme section under one heading (dictáte, under -ate) to occur in the feminine rhyme section under another heading (díctate under -ict). Personally I think this is just a slight annoyance (compared with the endless index-related fiddling of the Penguin Dictionary) and I cross-check with the Penguin dictionary to make sure I'm not missing anything. Others might find it more of an irritation.
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on 2 December 1998
I have found this book to be of great use since the time that I bought it. Having the words arranged by rhyming sounds helps out tremendously. It has separate sections of two and three syllable rhymings. Plus, there is a guide in the front of the book describing the different rules of rhyming and different rhyming style styles. Very useful.
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on 13 February 2001
I am a professional writer, and unlike the other reviewers here, I found the arrangement by phonetic sound confusing and difficult to use. My son--a 14-year-old aspiring songwriter and poet--for whom I originally bought this book, found it so annoying and frustrating that he gave it back to me--in exchange for my copy of Rosalind Fergusson's Penguin Rhyming Dictionary, which I have been using for years. I now plan to order a second copy of Fergusson, rather than struggle with this one.
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on 18 October 1998
This rhyming dictionary is arranged by sound, not by spelling. You look up your sound (using standard diacritical markings) and aren't stuck flipping back and forth from one spelling to another to find the one the writer has decided to use.
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on 17 July 1998
Using this book helped me with writing poetry. I was able to learn new meanings and definitions by opening up and finding words. Write poems, stories, songs, etc. This is a fun dictionary to have!
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on 22 June 2011
A very good book. The only problem is I didn't realise there were so many words to choose from. I have taken a little while to understand the formula it follows. It certainly helping me research and understand more.
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on 8 March 2014
Love this book - it has been a life saver to me, preventing me from using the same old cliche rhymes, and taking my songs in different directions when I have been thumbing through it to find one thing…..only to have a word jump out at me that is perfect - for a slightly different path of song ….and a better path! For a songwriter it's one of your best friends.
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on 29 August 2014
I bought this as a supplement for Pat Pattison's Songwriting: Essential Guide to Rhyming. I have been pleasantly surprised at how many ideas, not just rhymes, have emerged from looking at perfect, family and other types of rhymes for a given idea or word.
It's a great tool.
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