on 25 February 2013
As an amateur author, I have always been fascinated by words. Sad I know! I don't normally review items, but was incredibly pleased with this purchase, so much so that I felt obliged to inform other people about its brilliance. Firstly, I'd like to thank Amazon for their incredibly efficient delivery through 'Amazon Prime', the delivery came next day as promised and their packaging was very credible.
Now I have the boring bit out the way I would like to bore you with a soporific list of advantages. Zzz
Upon receipt of the package, I opened it, unveiled the masterpiece and caressed it for a few hours (my unusual ritual...) and my anal nature noticed a residue of glue on the spine and on the edges of a few pages. I did blubber a little, but then once I had recovered from my distressing ordeal, I noticed the glue scraped off with my fingernail. Phew! Tangent over. Addressing my point - I was struck by the quality of the book:
a. The dust cover is a dust cover, I personally hate them and prefer a book without one, but nonetheless it's still a dust cover - and a good one too.
b. The book oozes quality; the front cover feels weighty and substantial. The pages turn nicely, yes they are thin and will dog-ear easily if not looked after, but they need to be slender (or else the book would weigh a ton!).
c. Chambers is renown for its copious amount of words and being a concise, but easy, reference tool. I own both an Oxford thesaurus, and whilst the Oxford is nice, I prefer the Chambers - its feel, its conciseness, its easiness, the list goes on... In my humble opinion, Chambers are the holy grail of thesauri.
d. The book contains handy little quotes (miscellaneous and quite random albeit) and useful antonyms. The typeface is easy on the eye and visually elegant. All this sounds rather useless huh? I kind of agree, but when a book feels good, one indulges into it far easier and deeper than perhaps you would otherwise.
e. Words. And lots of them. I mentioned earlier that the book is 'concise', but seeing as the dictionary definition of the word essentially means 'comprehensive, but brief', I doubt my labeling of it as 'concise' is appropriate. It is not meant to be concise, nor a pocket dictionary (I did try - doesn't fit...), nor has a few words; it is much the opposite. In fact, at first the sheer magnitude of the book is overwhelming, every word has oodles of alternative replacements. The book dwells into every meaning of a word, if one searches for 'look', the thesaurus will respond with 'look after', 'look at', look forward'... the list goes on. Phrases are also explored - most useful for any writer wanting to explore dialect and unfamiliar jargon.
f. The book has a convenient and practical miscellany, highlighted by red edges, in the middle of the book. It's a refreshing addition and a good read. The layout keeps to the standard universal thesauri format - there is a neat section under applicable words highlighting how not to confuse them with a similar sounding or same spelling (homonym) word, such as 'too', 'to' and 'two'.
e. Like any thesaurus there are hyponym boxes dotted throughout the book, I for one didn't realize how many types of porcelain there was! A hyponym is a field of words that share the same umbrella; such as 'oak' is a type of 'wood'.
g. THE RIBBON! I like the ribbon. So does my cat...
I'm sorry to waste your time with such a 'non-concise' review, to put it bluntly - buy it now. Don't hesitate - just buy it. If you love words and want a treasure chest of, what feels like an infinite amount of words to explore then this is the book for you. Or if you want to showcase it just to make you look like an intellectual geek, than this is for you. It also serves as a great paperweight and it is comforting knowing that something on my desk would serve as a brilliant weapon (it would hurt being hit by it...). Once all the pages are foxed and the book is butted it will still continue to charm and entertain, and - more importantly - teach. It also serves as a good heirloom! Outburst of excitement over.
on 29 December 2012
I'd come to the conclusion that Chambers was the best thesaurus around from comparing my old, decrepit one with all the others available. Now I've got the new one and am astonished by it. First of all, what a beautiful book, just to look at. Then, what a comprehensive work it is! Couldn't be bettered.
on 14 September 2015
I'm not sure about the negative reviews although it does seem to relate to the paper back version rather than the hardback one. Received this today along with the 13th edition Chambers Dictionary, both hardback and arrived earlier than predicted which was very pleasing because I'm not the most patient of people. They are both is excellent condition although I have noticed a very slight scuff to one of the corners of the dust jacket which is a shame and the reason for why I didn't give full star rating.
I am very impressed with how comprehensive these books are, I am studying creative writing with the Open uni and the dictionary was recommended but I love words so I just had to get this. It is rather large, as is the dictionary but I didn't want a travel or pocket sized one anyway and the size and weight only add emphasis to the quality and depth of the book.
There is a new middle section which sounds interesting, called ' The Word Lover's Gallimaufry' words ranging from the "highly practical to the downright quirky." Back cover describes it as "an exclusive new red centre section that highlights some of the most interesting areas of English." It goes on to say that these words are anything ranging from words to impress to learning to avoid cliches.
As it's only just arrived I'm yet to properly explore or use it in my work, but first impressions are very good and I'm looking forward to delving in and taking a look at the features this has.
on 25 September 2012
I have used Chambers Thesauri for many years. The last one was just about held together with tape and determination. I never liked it because was bound in such a way that it didn't stay open at any page. Because of this, you could tell what I had eaten for breakfast for the last 10 years. My new one is a whole different kettle of fish, as it were. It DOES stay open, and has wonderful new features, plus a ribbon bookmark, which is really classy. I have covered it in plastic so that it doesn't end up covered in breakfast as the other one did. Well done, Chambers!