To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Is That a Word?: From AA to ZZZ, the Weird and Wonderful Language of SCRABBLE Hardcover – September 19, 2012
|New from||Used from|
Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
"Guides and manuals tend to be grim, charmless things. But not this one! If you consider SCRABBLE (and/or its digital knockoffs) a small key pillar of modern civilization--or even just an intellectually nutritious way of killing time with friends and family--why wouldn't you immediately buy a book as smart and literate and companionable as the game you love to play?"
"It's more than a dictionary or list of words to memorize. The way it's arranged by categories should make it easier to recall the words when next you play. And there are lots of surprises." -Psychology Today
"Bukszpan makes learning some of the Scrabblish basics a lot of fun." -CNET
"Bukszpan begins with a well-researched history of the origins and evolution of Scrabble and then moves on to discuss words that can be used when playing the game. While admitting that the official Scrabble dictionary is the final authority, the author provides some unusual words and their backgrounds. The illustrations are few but are quaint and antique looking, as in old pen-and-ink sketches. The book describes mutations of the game as well as records that have been set and includes useful lists, curious facts, and a Scrabblish dictionary."
"4 stars" -LitPick
From the Back Cover
If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle edition for only $2.99 (Save 70%). Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.
For thousands of qualifying books, your past, present, and future print-edition purchases now lets you buy the Kindle edition for $2.99 or less. (Textbooks available for $9.99 or less.)
Top Customer Reviews
On page 52, the nonword UNIDEAD should be replaced with the intended UNIDEAED.
On page 58, the nonword STENTO should be replaced with the intended STENTOR.
On page 89, the nonword OUTBALL should be replaced with the intended OUTBAWL.
On page 105, the nonword VIZSLAL should be replaced with the intended VIZSLA.
Some of Bukszpan's strategies may also be helpful to the novice, but his statement (page 113) that if your opening rack is AEINORT "the best thing to do is actually to pass," hoping your opponent will set up a bingo for your next play, is naive. This is an obvious strategy that would fool no competitive opponent, who (unless he could play a bingo) would simply use the opportunity for a free exchange of undesirable tiles, leaving you facing the same situation as before against a better-equipped opponent.
If you are unfamiliar with Scrabble and the many similar word games such as "Words With Friends",Lexulous",Bananagrams",etc;this book will give you some small idea of some of the wild,unusual and seldom heard or used words that get accepted in Scrabble.If you are an avid Scrabble player ,the various rules will be "old Hat" to you ,but at least you should find many words here to add to your repertoire or arsenal,or whatever it is called in Scrabble.There is a fairly extensive list of Scrabble books you might want to look into,as well as a list of the Dictionaries that are accepted to resolve arguments as to whether or not words are legitimate.There is no Index of the words given in the book,so it may be difficult refinding a word in the future.Just to give you an idea of some very unusual words you'll find in the book,here's a sample:
Lev:the currency of Bulgaria
Sybo: a variety of onion also known as the Welsh onion(also cibol)
Mot: a witty remark
Eft: a newt
Dene: a valley
Milt: to fertilize with fish sperm
Nucha:the nape of the neck
Spliff: a marijuana cigarette
All these and hundreds more right here for the taking,but don't be surprised if you friends want to avoid playing with you and suggest playing Horseshoes instead or maybe a boxing match,as dueling with pistols is no longer in style.
I bought this as a $1.99 "deal," and when I'd read the first part of it, I emailed a friend saying "I think you'd like this, grab it at the bargain price." Now I feel as if I gave her a bum steer. Everyone likes different things, of course, but I think it's a shame that Amazon doesn't give a "Look Inside the Book" on this one. You really need to decide whether you are interested in the last 3/4 of the book.
The first part, Part 1, "The Story of Scrabble and Beyond," amounts to 25% of the book. I liked it. It has a lot of information on game history, history of the rival word lists and dictionaries. It has interesting observations, comments, and criticism of the word choices and definitions in "The Official Scrabble Players' Dictionary." It has some interesting records--words with maximum possible scores and such--and historical curiosa ("the lowest winning score ever is currently held by Helena Gauthier, who bet her opponent -9 to -11.")
Part 2 of the book is nothing more than Bukszpan's compilations of themed groups of what he thinks are interesting Scrabble words. Yiddish Scrabble words, Scrabble words that are synonyms for "ghosts," Scrabble words that are names for different kinds of wind, and on and on and on and on and on. I was not charmed by his efforts to string some of these word collections together to give amusing usage examples: "At the next [Scrabble] table is some schlemiel who's schlepped his schlock in with him," etc.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Fun book - great for scrabble history and great way to learn new words.Published 15 days ago by Margaret Jones
Helped my Scrabble game so much I've been winning more and losing by get points lolPublished 1 month ago by Hippie grandma
Interesting. ...now my friends have a reference book and we can use a few more new words!Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
AMAZING words in this book that I never heard of!!! It is GREAT for SCRABBLE!!!!Published 7 months ago by Jane in PA
Book arrived today. More informed than I had hoped for....pleasantly pleased. This replaces my stack of dictionaries and thesaurus for fast look-ups. Read morePublished 10 months ago by jane navarre