Member Review

Cover Image: Babel


Pub Date:

Review by

penny s, Reviewer

My Recommendation

Babel is an ambitious but disjointed exploration into the twenty languages which make up the mother tongues of over half the world's population. It's as diverse in its coverage as each language is itself. This makes reading Dorren's book cover-to-cover a challenge. There are impediments to the flow of each chapter and the book. To make linguistics and the entire text approachable, the author chose an informal writing style. However, this approach doesn't work as intended. The reader is either drowned in terminology or left wondering why a pithy mentioned concept is relevant to that language. The narrative repeatedly wanders off onto new topics after a brief remark, that make it difficult to see the overall picture of the language. Despite these flaws, this can be a useful volume for those curious about different languages. However, reader beware, it lacks a cohesive tie.

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