Tina Jordan
May 16, 2005 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Crossworld

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Marc Romano
publisher
Broadway Books
genre
Nonfiction

We gave it a B+

After picking up a New York Times Sunday crossword as a college sophomore, Marc Romano was smitten; before long he was ”hopelessly addicted.” But this book isn’t just a smart, funny chronicle of Romano’s infatuation, it’s also a history of the NYT puzzle, as well as a mini-bio of its current editor, Will Shortz. Romano mines the brain of the devilishly talented Brendan Emmett Quigley, one of the nation’s best puzzle writers. He visits the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament (where he’s swamped by ”a wave of almost palpable hyperactive geekish energy”). His conclusion: A puzzler at work should never be disturbed. ”He or she is solving a mystery, and at the same time putting back together, word by word, the pieces of our broken world.”

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