toggle menu
menu
vocabulary
1000+ books
Book Menu

Lucky by Sebold

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

instructions
acute   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 2 uses
1  —1 use as in:
acute pain
I felt the pain most acutely in my eyes.
acutely = sharply (severely)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of acute means:
sharp (severe or strong) — usually negative
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
acute sense of smell
My focus became acute.
acute = sharp
DefinitionGenerally this sense of acute means:
sharp (highly perceptive in some area or mentally sharp)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
aesthetic
1 use
My motivation was largely aesthetic.
aesthetic = related to beauty or good taste
DefinitionGenerally aesthetic means:
related to beauty or good taste — often referring to one's appreciation of beauty or one's sense of what is beautiful

or:

beautiful or tasteful
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
amiable
2 uses
he was an amiable if not overly insightful man,
amiable = friendly, agreeable, and likable
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
belligerent
1 use
he asked belligerently.
belligerently = with an attitude of one eager to fight
DefinitionGenerally belligerent means:
hostile (the attitude of one eager to fight); or one already engaged in a fight or war
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
benevolent
1 use
His smile was almost benevolent.
benevolent = kind, generous, or charitable
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
brusque
2 uses
When the Palestinian man rang them up, he was brusque and hurried.
brusque = abrupt
DefinitionGenerally brusque means:
abrupt (sudden and quick — without taking the time to be friendly)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
defendant
20 uses
Later she tells cops that she thought it could have been either the defendant or the other guy.
defendant = person legally accused of a crime
DefinitionGenerally defendant means:
a person or institution legally accused or sued in court
Word Statistics
Book20 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
disdain
1 use
It was a mug, with a cartoon of a cat holding a bunch of balloons—the kind of gift that, in another mood, I would have disdained.
disdained = rejected as not good enough
DefinitionGenerally disdain means:
a lack of respect — often suggesting distaste and an undeserved sense of superiority

or:

to reject as not good enough
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
ebullient
1 use
I was Mary's little sister—excited, ebullient, alive.
ebullient = happy and energetic
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
elated
2 uses
I was elated, if a bit frightened.
elated = had a feeling of happiness and excitement
DefinitionGenerally elated means:
full of happiness and excitement
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
futile
2 uses
Trying to sop up the tears was futile.
futile = effort that is pointless because it is unsuccessful
DefinitionGenerally futile means:
effort that is pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
nuance
3 uses
Like a surgeon with a probe, she brought forth each nuance of the five minutes I'd spent inside that room.
nuance = subtle aspect (part or feature)
DefinitionGenerally nuance means:
a subtle difference  (a minor difference not obvious or important to most people)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
prescribe
11 uses
I thought, even then, that this doctor needed the Valium he prescribed for me more than I did.
prescribed = instructed to be given
DefinitionGenerally prescribe means:
to recommend or require what should be done

or more specifically:

of a medical doctor:  to give medical instructions — such as writing that a patient should take antibiotics
Word Statistics
Book11 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
scrupulous
4 uses
Hers came from having taught school all her life and being scrupulous with her savings.
scrupulous = careful
DefinitionGenerally scrupulous means:
careful to behave ethically and/or diligently (with great care and attention to detail)
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 13
Web Links
scrutiny
4 uses
I was scrutinizing his mother.
scrutinizing = looking at very carefully

(editor's note:  The suffix "-ive" converts a word to a verb. This is the same pattern you see in words like apologize, theorize, and dramatize.)
DefinitionGenerally scrutiny means:
careful examination of something
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
superficial
2 uses
They worried about the superficial swaying citizens on a jury.
superficial = things easily perceived rather than deep or penetrating
DefinitionGenerally superficial means:
relating to a surface rather than to anything deep or penetrating (often of injuries or thinking)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
taciturn
1 use
My grandmother is stoic and taciturn.
taciturn = with a tendency to be reserved and not to talk
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
testify
24 uses
...they would lead with the other witnesses and somehow work it so I could testify on the second day.
testify = provide oral evidence in court
DefinitionGenerally testify means:
provide evidence of something — especially to say something under oath in a court of law
Word Statistics
Book24 uses
Library13 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
testimony
12 uses
On top was a copy of my testimony from the preliminary hearing.
testimony = statement at a trial or hearing
DefinitionGenerally testimony means:
something that serves as evidence — especially a statement at a trial or hearing
Word Statistics
Book12 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
Go to Book Menu
Take Pre-Reading Quiz
SAT® is a registered trademark of the College Board, which is not affiliated with verbalworkout.com™, and does not endorse this site.