Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Make Me Smile

Hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl

Stamps in the shapes of letters, numbers, and punctuation marks.

I’m stretching the definition of the term book a bit for today’s prompt. You see, it’s impossible for me to narrow this list down to fictional stories.

Which tales make me smile has evolved throughout the course of my life. My answer at age 5 would be completely different than what I’d answer at age 20 or today. And who knows what will entice me when I’m 80!

What has never and will never change is my love of words, the meanings of words, and knowledge in general, so that’s what I’m tweaking this post to focus on.

The New Oxford American Dictionary by Oxford University Press

Roget’s International Thesaurus  by Peter Mark Roget, Robert L. Chapman

Urban Dictionary

The Complete Rhyming Dictionary by Clement Wood, Ronald J. Bogus



Most people probably wouldn’t sit down and read these sources like like they were novels, but I’ve been doing that since I first learned how to read.

Yes, the encyclopedias at my grandparents’ home were decades out of date by the time I discovered them, but I still adored reading about what the world was like in the early 1960s when they bought them!

Knowledge is power. I see everything from the Internet to antique books tucked away in the corner of someone else’s house as marvellous opportunities to learn about things you might have never otherwise discovered.


Filed under Blog Hops

102 Responses to Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Make Me Smile

  1. What a great list! I used to devour the old encyclopedias in our basement and at my grandparents (different editions). Not to mention my love or dictionaries. I love that you took this topic in an unexpected direction.

  2. I’m intrigued by your twist on this week’s theme. I read encyclopedias (even out-of-date ones) too.

    Here’s my Top Ten Tuesday post.

    Happy reading!

  3. Love what you did here. I used to read our encyclopedia like a novel. Then again I used to also read Trivial Pursuit cards for fun too.

  4. Oooo have you read anything by Mark Forsyth? The Etymologicon or Horologicon, I’m sure you’d love those if you enjoy words!

    My TTT is here

  5. I love your response. It’s such a fun thing that you loved to read books of words even when you were young.

  6. I totally love your list. I think all of us who enjoy literature would agree with it.

    My TTT.

  7. Love Urban Dictionary. And it’s hard to imagine a world without Wikipedia now – so many great stories on there, I love looking up about people’s lives.

  8. I use most of those, but they don’t make me smile. Glad they do for you. I’ve posted part one of my latest work in progress.

  9. I like your etymological angle! Fun with words is one reason I keep listening to “Says You”, an NPR humor’s all about wordplay and obscure terms.

  10. I love Roget’s Thesaurus too…especially when I’m writing a book review and want an alternative to “compelling”, “intriguing” or other words I tend to overuse!

    My TTT

  11. Ooh, I love this! I used to read our encyclopedia as if it was a novel as well 😀

    My TTT:

  12. I used to love reading our family encyclopedias! I mean, we used them for school projects too, but we’d also just pick one at random and read about whatever was on the page the book fell open to, also.

  13. When you’re a word person, these books are a must, aren’t they? 🙂

  14. I like your spin on the topic! I honestly had a hard time going back and thinking of books from a few years ago that made me smile. Since I started using Goodreads and other apps more to “remember” for me, my memory has changed.

  15. I used to love the old encyclopedias! My mum bought them in the early 2000s when my older sister was in middle school.They taught me a lot about the world before we had regular internet or TV.

  16. Love how you interpreted this prompt! All must haves for book/word/language lovers 🙂

  17. Interesting take on the blog prompt!

  18. I totally understand what you’re saying, Lydia. I own more than one thesaurus. I still use the dictionary to make sure I understand the meaning of words. Thanks for your unique take on this meme.

  19. I remember reading through old World Book encyclopedias as a kid, we had some around the house and also some cool books on dinosaurs (probably incredibly dated by todays standards, of course, but they were fascinating)!

  20. Yes!! I also loved to read encyclopedias and dictionaries. And the Thesaurus may be my favorite book ever. 😉 Great post!

  21. As a child and teen I always kept a dictionary with me when I was reading, so that I could look up words I didn’t know. I can’t stand not knowing what something means. I love the dictionary feature on my kindle.
    I love a thesaurus for when I’m writing reviews, my mind always supplies simple words instead of eloquent ones.

  22. I think it’s good to read dictionaries and encyclopedias for knowledge. But for me, information slips out of my head way too fast for me to learn much. I used to think if I read the whole dictionary, it would make me smarter but of course it didn’t but at least, it helped me understand that words have more than one meanings.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. Have a lovely day.

  23. Your post makes me smile! Great surprise spin! I love words too!

  24. Reading the thesaurus every now and then is fun! It’s a great way to learn new words… Here’s my TTT list this week.

  25. Ha-ha! A surprising list from you this week. Thanks for visiting my blog. Have a great week! Stay safely away from the coronavirus!

  26. Christine @ LifeWithAllTheBooks

    Love your twist of this week’s theme! 😊

  27. Fun interpretation of the TTT topic today! I love words and have read dictionary definitions for pleasure but I have no memory for facts so I leave them in the encyclopedia where I can retrieve them as needed!

  28. My answer at age 5 would be completely different than what I’d answer at age 20 or today. And who knows what will entice me when I’m 80!

    I actually think that’s one of the joys of TTT! I can look back at some of my old answers and be reminded of things I loved at the time. Sometimes that’s stood the test of time and sometimes not, but it’s pretty much always interesting!

  29. I like your spin on the topic! I’ve used Urban Dictionary many, many times. It’s very useful when you live on the Internet like I do.

  30. When I was a child, my neighbours had a complete set of Encyclopaedia Britannica and I thought they were amazing! I used to read the ones at the local library like they were novels – go and choose like Q or Z and sit down and read it through!

  31. It’s easy to get in a hole while reading Encyclopedia or Wikipedia. 😀

  32. I’m so interested in your list being all books that we might typically think are “boring” or easily dismiss. My thesaurus was my best friend when I was a teenager and during early writing, so it makes me smile from nostalgia, for sure! Same for the rhyming dictionary!

    I know that while Wikipedia may not be a good “source” for official things, but I have learned so many things from Wikipedia!

  33. Great spin on this week’s topic! I was always fascinated by my grandparent’s encyclopedias and spent a lot of time when I was a kid sitting on the floor next to their bookcase and thumb through them.

  34. RS

    Oh, I did the same with my dad’s handful (not a complete collection) of 1950s World Books! We still have them; they have some beautiful illustrations. Plus I think that a lot of nonfiction, if it can survive long enough past its initial time period of simply being out of date where no one wants or needs it, starts to regain value as a time capsule/historical artifact.

    I wasn’t nearly as dedicated to the dictionary or thesaurus, though. What a neat hobby for a kid to have.

  35. What a neat take on this weeks topic. I used to read definitions a lot too. We had a game where someone would pick an uncommon word and everyone would write a made up or real definition of it and then we’d try and guess the correct definition. Lots of fun. Thanks for visiting my TTT! 🙂

  36. I love that you included the dictionary and thesaurus! I would never read those books from cover to cover, but I do use both a lot. My physical dictionary and thesaurus are on a shelf getting dusty – the online versions are just easier to use. Still.

    Happy TTT!


  37. interesting list! I love words, too. and I love to seek words out, especially in English. and I read some Japanese novels too in translation. and I always investigate the Japanese words in it. I try to learn the Japanese Language, too, but it´s difficult

  38. Really interesting take on the topic! I do remember reading a children’s dictionary when I was a kid – maybe that’s why we all love words so much 🙂

  39. I remember scrolling through Urban Dictionary in school! And I loved reading encyclopaedias too – I think I had an illustrated one by Usborne and it was just really fun to read and learn. Nice spin on the topic.

  40. I really like to learn another language other than my mother-tongue–English in’t my mother tongue, tho. So, dictionary has always being my friend 🙂

  41. I’ve thought of that whole “learn a word a day” thing for the dictionary before, but I, personally, don’t have an interest in it. I do like that you look to more academic-type resources for pieces that make you smile and such. Urban Dictionary is hilarious at times, so I can see why it’s on the list.

  42. I love your list!!!! One of my favorite things to do is go down the Wikipedia rabbit hole!

  43. Oh my goodness, I LOVE your take on this theme! What a great point you made. I used to love reading Encyclopedias when I was younger but it’s been years. I would love to find a set and start doing that again. Awesome post!

  44. I love your twist on this week’s prompt! I also used to read encyclopedias when I was younger in the school library.

  45. Love your take on this; and I share the love of such books too 🙂 That rhyming dictionary sounds wonderful

  46. Oooh, Great list! A lot of people do read these resources as novels. Sometimes just to learn to read!

  47. Clever spin! And what would we do without those books…! I have a display shelf in my library at school filled with encyclopedias and Brittanicas. The kids love browsing through them!

  48. Love your twist on this topic!!

  49. Wonderful twist on this weeks topic!!

    I have some very fond memories of being younger and me and my siblings would play games with Encyclopedias. (Our favourite was, “One person has the book and flips to a random page and quizzes everyone on whatever topic was on the page.” XD hours flew by considering how dense the Encyclopedia was!)

    Happy Reading!!! <3

Leave a Reply to Bree @1girl2manybooks Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *