19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Excellent combination once you get used to the structure,
This review is from: Collins Dictionary and Thesaurus: Two books in one (Dictionary/Thesaurus) (Hardcover)
Every home should have at least one good dictionary and thesaurus, so get the very best you can afford. The "Collins Dictionary & Thesaurus" is a rather hefty tome, weighing in with over 1400 pages of tightly printed script.
Structurally, each page is divided into two - the top section being the dictionary, the bottom section the thesaurus. The two run in parallel, so on page one you will find "abandon - to forsake completely; desert; leave behind ..." etc., under the dictionary section, while at the bottom of the page you will discover, "abandon ... leave, desert, forsake, jilt, leave behind ..." etc., as its thesaurus entry.
As a dictionary, I certainly couldn't fault the wealth of words on offer or the clarity of their definition or illustration. It includes many contemporary words or many which have recently entered the language. It covers a broad geographic spectrum in origin. Scientific terms are explained in accessible, lay terms. The thesaurus, too, seems well balanced and informative, and offers an often extensive range of synonyms and alternatives.
Combining dictionary and thesaurus is a useful ploy, and one a number of publishers have broached over the last few years. However, the choice of running the two as separate entities in the one volume can be a little confusing ... and seems to duplicate some of the printing, as you can see by looking at my above example of 'abandon'. Of course, it's probably easier to use modern technology to run together a dictionary and thesaurus in this way, printing them as two sections, rather than go for the expensive task of getting people to merge definitions and thesaurus as one entry. But it can be confusing, looking at two places on the same page to try to absorb the information you're after.
However, getting used to the twin roles of dictionary and thesaurus is something you quickly adjust to once you start using the volume regularly. On the whole, it's a very accessible book. The printing is crisp, but quite small (you will need your glasses if you wear them). The paper is good quality, matt, but a bit flimsy to the feel - though, I confess, I've yet to damage a page.
Overall, an excellent product. However, dictionaries or thesauri are really a matter of taste. It would be better to actually inspect a copy in your local bookshop - get a feel for it. It's a heavy tome, relatively bulky, and may not be the easiest to manage for many people - and it's certainly not for carrying in your pocket or bag. I write professionally (in both my jobs), so have a dozen or more dictionaries. While this Collins publication has a welcome place on my shelf and while I can vouch for its usefulness, I would again suggest that you have a look at what is on offer at your local bookshop and confirm precisely which one best suits your needs, your pocket (in both senses), and your lifestyle.