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Ammon Shea has been reading dictionaries since he was ten years old. Along the way he has supported this habit by being a street musician in Paris, a gondolier in San Diego, and a furniture mover in New York City. He is the author (with Peter Novobatzky) of two previous books about obscure words. He lives in New York with his girlfriend (a former lexicographer) and a large number of old dictionaries.