Mountweazel n. the phenomenon of false entries within dictionaries and works of reference. Often used as a safeguard against copyright infringement.
Just before the turn of the century, Peter Winceworth, assigned to the letter S at Swansby’s Encyclopaedic Dictionary, is flailing a bit. Utterly sick with love and convinced that his pompous colleagues misunderstand the whole purpose of their enterprise, Winceworth takes what measure of control he has and begins writing unauthorized, fictitious entries for the dictionary. In the present day, Mallory, now the lone employee of Swansby’s and facing her own romantic challenges, is tasked with ferreting out these mountweazels and preserving the integrity of the dictionary while a ballistic reader calls in daily with comically aggressive threats. Winceworth and Mallory, though separated by a century, are ultimately connected by their brilliant dalliance with words and their pursuit to understand life’s uncertain path. Joyously absurd, The Liar’s Dictionary is an extraordinary debut that relishes in language’s enormous power to shape the world and connect us.