Two book recommendations in one week? Two book recommendations in one week. What can I say? There's a lot of puzzle books out there that I want to make sure you know about whilst Christmas shopping.
My man Matt Gaffney finally put out "mental_floss Crosswords," an anthology of his amazing meta crosswords that he posts on his site. I'm not sure what the magazine "mental_floss" has to do with the collection, but if it helps sell more copies, I'm all for it. For those who go to Matt's site regularly, you know the drill, so just buy a couple for yourself and loved ones. For the uninitiated, here's all the pertinent facts you need to know about Matt Gaffney/his metas:
On Fridays, Matt posts a crossword and after you solve it you have to extract some sort of information from the puzzle and do something with it. I occasionally post metas myself as contest on this site (here's the most recent), but please, let's give a slow clap to the master Gaffney. Matt's puzzles are easy at the beginning of the month (both the crossword and the meta), then progressively get harder as the weeks go by (many of the week four ones just slay me). All levels of difficulty are represented in this greatest hits package.
While solving many of these puzzles, I often catch myself saying: "wished I'd thought of that theme." Then again, I've gone on the record many many times saying that I liberally ripped off Matt when I started making puzzles. Staying on topic of themes-I'd-wished-I-came-up-with, Matt oddly didn't include the meta whose answer was his cell phone number. Now that one was crazy.
Highly recommended for the puzzler with the discerning taste.
Share the puzzle. New one on Monday.