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The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary (Fifth Edition) Paperback – August 6, 2014
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Like most of the Scrabble world, I had very high hopes for this long overdue update. Alas, it has turned out to be extremely disappointing. One noted club director called it "a clusterf..." and I have to agree.
The problems and issues with the OSPD5 (as well as the OWL3, the club and tournament version containing words that have been "expurgated" from OSPD) have been well-documented for the past two months in numerous articles, blogs, and even on Colbert's TV show. So I won't bother reiterating them all...just do the research on your own using any online search engine. A good starting point is to read fellow expert Dan Pratt's review in these pages. Keep in mind, his review was written very early on, so it barely scratches the surface!
My advice is to wait for the inevitable second-printing which will hopefully correct many of the errors of commission and omission.. Meanwhile, you can access the MW Online site and get all of these words for free...as well as many additional acceptable words that should have been added to the updated OSPD, but for some reason weren't included.
UPDATE: Due to popular request, I'm adding the links to sites mentioned in my review. The first link leads you to the MW page devoted to the OSPD 5 dictionary. The second link is a review of OSPD 5 that also includes footage from the Colbert TV show segment I referenced above.
Buyers should be aware that this book is just a "sanitized" (and thus shortened) version of the official tournament play words list. You will not find in this book many of the expletives and slang that everyone knows (and of course many that they don't know :) ).
This is not a dictionary/word list for a serious Scrabble player. This is instead a book to be used by folks that like to play word games such as Scrabble but are easily offended by the mere existence of some words in our language that they may find offensive.
The book I read is paperback and 728 pages + the addenda. It's really a big help if you are a serious player.
I recommend highly.
Includes words of 2 to 15 letters, but no definitions. And is only available via membership in North American SCRABBLE Players Association.
Note: The older 2005 edition is listed for sale here: National Scrabble Association Official Tournament and Club Word List
I love Scrabble. With an English degree, a bookwormish lifestyle and a highly verbal family, I arrogantly call it a challenge to be taken down by another player. The Scrabble dictionary is part of my confidence.
This dictionary standarizes the game. What other dictionaries lack is consistency and clarity. What counts as a foreign word? This dictionary creates a boundary otherwise unavailable for word usage.
If I played Scrabble in a league, I might be pickier about the words made available. Professional Scrabble players may grouse about the completeness of this edition. That's fair and accurate. But I love to play Scrabble the most with my aunt and Grandma out on a porch at a cottage on a lake, or at a coffeehouse with an editor friend of mine, highly caffeinated, enjoying family or friendship more than the game. Therefore, the Official Scrabble Dictionary is plenty for me.
Tidy little definitions are provided. "Hemagog" is defined as "an agent that promoters blood flow." Lets me know I can put an "S" on the end to pluralize it, that 'hemagog' is a noun. I am happy with that, yet fully aware a hematologist could tell me a hundred more things.
Profanity unfortunately is in there. All our favorite four-letter words seem to have made the cut. Yes, even THAT one. But the fact of the matter is what makes for common conversation is not always appropriate family discussion. A "legal" word in this book makes the game awkward when players with young children. I'm not saying don't buy the book. I am saying that you should be aware.
I recommend this book with the caveat that if you want to know everything about a word, buy the Oxford English Dictionary. If you want to play a relaxed game of Scrabble, buy this book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The Fifth edition definitely needed for serious Scrabble players.Published 19 hours ago by a senior citizen
I ordered the Kindle version for portability. The word search feature works well when using an Amazon Kindle device. Read morePublished 22 hours ago by Eric T. Johnson
The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary (Fifth Edition) is our agreed upon referee...even if someone always feels it's behind in their specialty ("you just wait, my word will... Read morePublished 3 days ago by Jnng Ricdiss
I gave this to a friend and she was very excited to receive it. I am sure it will greatly improve her Scrabble games.Published 10 days ago by Grandma B