The Surgeon of Crowthorne   Simon Winchester

The film The Professor and the Madman  (starring Mel Gibson and Sean Penn) was based on this book. The film follows the story of the two men who were the most instrumental in crating the original Oxford English Dictionary, an mammoth achievement is pre-computer days, made more so when one of them was a ‘madman.’ The book, however, also chronicles the evolution of dictionaries, in particular the OED, a subject none of us give any thought to. Both stories make fascinating reading. This book must surely become a classic.