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John McWhorter has an knack for explaining linguistic concepts engagingly. This time, he's focusing on how language changes over time--words changing meaning and pronunciation.
In a relatively short book, the reader/listener learns quite a bit. I also learned to relax a bit about the "right" way to say things. It still jars me to hear someone say, "I literally died!," but I don't get so irritated (or even aggravated).
The subject matter lends itself perfectly to the audio-book format, and McWhorter's narration is clear and enjoyable. I read some of the book, but it was so good to listen to that I didn't skip ahead after reading--I listened to the same parts that I had just read.
37 of 41 people found this review helpful
I really enjoy listening to John McWhorter's books and lectures. This book was well narrated and contained many fascinating facts about language, which I appreciate. John McWhorter's narrations are pleasant to listen to and consistently bring the subject covered to life.
The only negative comment that I can make is that I found the chapters lacking in clear organization. I felt they were not crisply themed and were a little rambling to follow. I did not enjoy that aspect of this book. However, that said, Words on the Move contained a good deal of engaging and helpful information. Speaking in defense of the slightly rambling organization, I might say that for some that style might evoke a conversational and informal feeling.
This book did not disappoint, overall. Even with the above noted limitations or really quibbles I enjoyed the book so much that I finished it at a much faster rate than normal. Recommended if you like reading about linguistics and how language changes over time.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful