In life, there are hundreds of familiar experiences, feelings and objects for which no words exist, yet hundreds of strange words are idly loafing around on signposts, pointing at places. The Meaning of Liff connects the two. BERRIWILLOCK (n.) – An unknown workmate who writes ‘All the best’ on your leaving card. ELY (n.) – The first, tiniest inkling that something, somewhere has gone terribly wrong. GRIMBISTER (n.) – Large body of cars on a motorway all travelling at exactly the speed limit because one of them is a police car. KETTERING (n.) – The marks left on your bottom or thighs after sunbathing on a wickerwork chair. OCKLE (n.) – An electrical switch which appears to be off in both positions. WOKING (ptcpl.vb.) – Standing in the kitchen wondering what you came in here for.
I’m not sure I can really call this a review, I have so little to say about this book.
It was humorous, generally speaking, but may have worked better as a book to dip in and out of rather than as one to read from cover to cover (as I did). Some of the words are words that it might be nice to have a word for too, and some of them even make sense connected to the place name used. I’m not sure why they used place names, it was probably easier than making up entirely new words, however entirely new words would have been better I think, and they might have even crept into use (flange of baboons anyone?).
I would recommend the hardcover as a book to flick through, it is a rather handsome volume too, so might make a good coffee table book (if your coffee table isn’t already covered with papers, and pens, and glasses, and books and various other items as every surface of our house tends to be).