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The New York Times Little Black (and White) Book of Crosswords Spiral-bound – October 17, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Will Shortz has been the crossword puzzle editor of The New York Times since 1993. He is also the puzzlemaster on NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday and is founder and director of the annual American Crossword Puzzle Tournament. He has edited countless books of crossword puzzles, Sudoku, KenKen, and all manner of brain-busters.

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Product Details

  • Spiral-bound: 464 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; 1st edition (October 17, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031236105X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312361051
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.4 x 7.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #138,353 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Susan K. Parkinson on January 1, 2007
Format: Spiral-bound
When I got this book for Christmas, I was not only amazed, but stunned. The quality is unsurpassed. The paper quality is such, that if you do the 200 puzzles in pencil (yes I know, a sin to "real" crossword solvers"), you will be able to erase all traces of answers, and do them over and over again.

The hardcover and spiral binding is top quality. I know I will never have problems taking this book with me. It is just the right size for my "bag of holding", I mean purse, or would fit nicely in a briefcase for lunch time sovling at work.

The 200 puzzles are neatly arranged from One to Six Top Hats, based on the Mon - Sat New York Times difficulty. There are enough of each type that I can lope through them easily or if I want a harder challenge I can have that as well.

I can't reccomend this book enough! Thank you Will Shortz for putting together such an amazing book!
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Format: Spiral-bound
This is a great choice for those (like me) who are new to the Times crosswords. There are puzzles of every level, Monday-Saturday, and unlike some other Times puzzle books they are organized and labeled by difficulty so you know where you are in the week.

The smaller size is very comfortable, with the puzzle itself always on a right-hand page and clues on the left. That might make it a little tricky for left-handers to get around the spiral binding, but for the rest of us it's very comfortable. I really like the paper quality on this one, too. It's a heavier weight, slightly glossy, true white paper that feels nice to write on.

All said, it's a great way to get started on Times crosswords!
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
Ever since watching the fun documentary "Word Play", I've been a huge crossword puzzle devotee. I've purchased several NYT crossword puzzle books and hungrily completed them, enjoying the word play and the perplexing clues. I was so thrilled to discover the new edition "Little Black and White Book". While there are many things that I really like about this edition, it does have some drawbacks.

First, the format of this book is quite nice. It's smaller than most books, which makes carrying around in your coak pocket very doable. The puzzles are organized in order of difficulty, so if you feel like an easier puzzle or a harder puzzle, it's at your fingertips.

What I don't like is the paper that the puzzles are printed on. Now, I'm an ink solver, but I use an erasable pen. Using one of those pens on this shiny paper creates such a huge mess. The ink doesn't erase well at all, but it smears all over the page. The previous reviewer mentions solving these with pencils, so maybe that's the answer.

Overall, any crossword edition by Will Shortz is a winner in my book. I just wished the paper was of a different quality.
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
This travel-sized collection features 200 New York Times daily crossword puzzles originally printed in 2003. The puzzles are clustered from Monday to Saturday in increasing order of difficulty as shown by from one to six top hats on the page. There are 50 puzzles from each of Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. There are 30 Thursdays and 10 each of Friday and Saturday.
Clues appear on the left side and 4" x 4" puzzle grids appear on the right side. Answers are provided on the last 50 pages. The book is spiral bound with sturdy cardboard front and back covers. Unfortunately the puzzles herein overlap with about 75% of the 2007 page-a-day calendar content instead of mixing puzzles from several years.
The predominance of easier early week puzzles make this a great gift for a casual or new crossword fan. This will be a fixture in my suitcase for some time and I hope that St. Martin's Griffin will print a second 'Little Black (and White)' collection.
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
This is a quality, well-crafted book. It's too heavy to keep in your bag, but great for your desk. The range of difficulties is great if some days you want a challenge but other days you just want to feel smart. My only complaint is that the paper is such high quality-- thick and glossy-- that it doesn't take ink or pencil the way it could. Overall that really isn't a big deal, and the number and variety of puzzles is great for the price!
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
Great little crossword book! I'm in the "one hat" section, but my crossword savvy friends start from the hard stuff "five hats" and work forward. Book is well bound so that it stays open and uses big print. Easy on the eyes, hard on the brain. Perfect for a summer on the deck.
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
As I wrote in a review about another crossword book in this series, these NYT spiral hard-cover compilations by Will Shortz are my favorite crossword books. The size is comfortable, the spiral binding and page layout make it easy to use, the hard cover and heavy paper give it a quality feel (and no bleed-thru), and the puzzles offer a good range of easy to difficult. I love being able to choose how challenged I want to be at a given time.

This one is my favorite in the series so far. It breaks the puzzles up into 5 levels from very easy to extremely challenging, and contains more puzzles (200) than some of the others in the series. There is one puzzle where the wrong grid has been printed opposite it so it can't be worked (surprised that no one caught that in the proofing), but with 200 in this volume that was a minor issue. The quality printing and binding of these spiral bound, hard-cover NYT crossword books can't be beat. All in all, the top-notch production, long with the feature of offering different degrees of difficulty, make them the best out there.
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