Sail Away with Stan!
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Become a Crossword Friend


If you love crosswords, Cruciverbalism is bound to enhance your puzzling pleasure. Stan Newman takes you “behind the grid” to show what really makes crossword puzzles (and their creators) tick—and offers proven strategies that will make you a better solver.

Stan reveals...

  • The untold story of the victory of the young crossword Turks over puzzledom’s Old Guard, paving the way for the lively, contemporary crosswords you enjoy today
  Why it’s become a tradition for daily newspaper puzzles to increase in difficulty during the week
  Common solving mistakes, and why it’s better to focus on one area of a puzzle at a time
  Why you shouldn’t feel guilty about consulting “performance-enhancing reference works”
  100 Essential Words crossworders need to know
  The woman who made crosswords what they are today
  The “hidden rules of the grid” that will make you a better clue sleuth, including Evocatives, Partials, Hedgers, and the devious Basic Confusables
  The five championship-clinching traits of the gridmasters... and lots more.

Buy the book at 30% off

“Cruciverbalism is smart, informative, and valuable. Any crossword puzzler will enjoy this book.”
--Will Shortz, Crossword Editor, New York Times

Cruciverbalism is Stanley Newman’s fascinating glimpse into the minutiae-mad, pun-happy mind of Homo cruciverbalis, the crossword junkie. This book made me think, it made me laugh out loud, but mostly it made me want to solve some crosswords.”
-- Ken Jennings, Jeopardy! Champion

“If, like me, your day is not complete without an intimate encounter with a challenging crossword puzzle, reading Stanley Newman on life inside the grid is a revelation. And there’s a bonus: Very few revelations are as funny and as sweet as this one is.”
-- Daniel Okrent, author, Great Fortune: The Epic of Rockefeller Center

Cruciverbalism is an amazing journey into the mind and the thinking process of a puzzle genius. It’s like being in the dugout of a major league team, or backstage on Broadway, for it gives unprecedented insight into the business and creative side of puzzles and those unique people who write and solve them. I wish I were in that elite group!”
-- Jeffrey Lyons, NBC

“Crossword puzzle fans will eat up this entertaining stew of history, arcana and personalities in this memoir–cum–instruction manual by longtime Newsday crossword editor Newman…. And woven into the mix is a great lesson in how to engineer a midlife career switch. Newman, an advocate of “new wave” crosswords, gleefully describes his “war” with “pedantic” Eugene Maleska, the New York Times crossword editor from 1977 to 1993, a David-vs.-Goliath tale. But Newman doesn't neglect the nuts and bolts about difficulty levels (contrary to popular belief, Sunday isn't the hardest puzzle of the week: it's about midweek-level, but bigger), the types of clues used by constructors and the most effective ways to approach puzzle solving... Newman touts the health benefits of puzzling, citing studies that show it can help ward off Alzheimer's and senile dementia. He also provides some interesting trivia bits, among them, …many of the puzzles appearing in daily newspapers are constructed by prison inmates.”
-- Publishers Weekly