Wondrous Words #398

WWWEvery week word-lovers post new words they’ve discovered while reading. It’s called Wondrous Words Wednesday and was created by Kathy at Bermuda Onion’s Weblog.

Two words linked together caught my attention this week. I was reading a book review in the Times Sunday Book Review. It was for Elizabeth Strout’s new book, Anything Is Possible .

crystalline austerity:  “Where the earlier book turned on the crystalline austerity and reserve of its narrative voice, guided by Strout’s unerring sense of what Lucy would omit, the new work almost literally undoes the older one.”

Those two words don’t come together in the dictionary so I looked them up separately.

crystalline: An adjective meaning very clear.
austerity: An adjective meaning severe or strict in manner, attitude, or appearance.

I’m guessing here, but I think the writer meant that Elizabeth Strout’s narrative was clear and severe. What do you think?


That’s all for me this week. Don’t forget to visit Kathy for more Wondrous Words Wednesday.

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2 Responses to Wondrous Words #398

  1. I think you are right.

  2. I knew austerity but have never seen it used with crystalline. I think you are right in your deduction.

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