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368 pages
Product Description
<p>“It takes true brilliance to lift the arid tellings of lexicographic fussing into the readable realm of the thriller and the bodice-ripper….David Skinner has done precisely this, taking a fine story and honing it to popular perfection.”<br />—Simon Winchester, <em>New York Times</em> bestselling author of <em>The Professor and the Madman</em></p><p><em>The Story of Ain’t</em> by David Skinner is the captivating true chronicle of the creation of <em>Merriam Webster’s Third New International Dictionary</em> in 1961, the most controversial dictionary ever published. Skinner’s surprising and engaging, erudite and witty account will enthrall fans of Winchester’s <em>The Professor and the Madman</em> and <em>The Meaning of Everything</em>, and <em>The Know-It-All</em> by A.J. Jacobs, as it explores a culture in transition and the brilliant, colorful individuals behind it. <em>The Story of Ain’t</em> is a smart, often outrageous, and altogether remarkable tale of how egos, infighting, and controversy shaped one of America’s most authoritative language texts, sparking a furious language debate that the late, great author David Foster Wallace (<em>Infinite Jest</em>) once called “the Fort Sumter of the Usage Wars.”  <br /></p>