Cheryl's Reviews > The Broken Teaglass

The Broken Teaglass by Emily Arsenault
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's review
Oct 19, 2009

really liked it

Young Billy Webb has just started a new job. He will be working as a editorial assistant for Samuelson Company. He quickly becomes friends with one of his co-workers, Mona Minot. It helps to make a friend for such a boring job or not so boring job as Billy and Mona soon discover.

One day Mona discovers the word “Editrix”. It is used in the following example:

Mrs. Hopkins was one of the only editrixes at the journal, but she was one of the most valuable members on staff. She had a unique ability to spot and foster young writing talent. Male colleagues patronizingly referred to her style as “the motherly touch”.

At the bottom of this example was the following reference:

Dolores Beekmim
The Broken Teaglass
Robinson Press
14 October 1983

The above information was referring to where the editor got the word “Editrix” from. The problem was that neither Billy nor Mona could locate an author by the name of Dolores Beekmim of The Broken Teaglass. In addition that Robinson Press did not exist as well. This wasn’t the only passage that Billy or Mona found that was taken from this ghost novel. As Billy and Mona investigate they uncover that somehow these passages are relate in connection with a murder.

I liked that author, Emily Arsenault incorporated her experiences working in the editorial department at Merriam-Webster dictionary company into her debut novel. One thing I really found interesting about this book was the profession that Billy held as a lexicographer. I knew nothing about what a lexicographer was and had to do research on the topic. There are two different types of lexicographers…there is practical lexicography, these are the people who compile all the words and meaning to write and edit the dictionaries. Then you have theoretical lexicography. These are the people who really do all the work. They have to research the origins of the word and the vocabulary language. Both of these lexicography’s were featured in this book. Mrs. Arsenault really knew her stuff. I appreciated this fact.

Though I wasn’t fully invested in Billy and Mona, the intrigue was enough to keep my interesting till the end. Mrs. Arsenault gave me a new refreshing twist on a murder mystery. I liked that hidden within the explanation of vocabulary words in the dictionary laid …deceit, deception and devotion.

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