I spoke to Elaine McQuade of Oxford University Press who had earlier sent me a one-page statement in response to Sunday’s blog.
Sky Hawk - I love it!
Elaine was clearly enthusiastic about the many books OUP has commissioned about nature and the environment: "for example Sky Hawk by debut author Gill Lewis - I love it!" From the reviews I have read, it sounds great. We got on to the trickier subject of dictionaries and Elaine was keen to stress that another OUP dictionary, the Primary, is more comprehensive and contains all the words removed from the Junior.
In the end, we had a friendly agreement to disagree. I feel OUP did not consider the cultural signal being sent out in removing what for me seems a disproportionate number of nature words. The specific choices seem to include some of the words most symbolic of the relationship between childhood and nature and, therefore, culture and heritage, as this blog will show over the coming days.
The Stick Book is fast becoming a classic
The ***** and the ***, when they are both full grown...
Next time, great book ideas from the RSPB, and some more words no dictionary should be without.