He claims that in his crime fiction he tones down his trademark use of obscure words, but he slips "rebarbative" into the essay.
Art Resource, NY Sixth-century mosaic of the Nile River with a crocodile, a duck and lotus flowers So why has this remarkable empire for so long been perceived as abhorrent and rebarbative, when not being dismissed?
It is puzzling and rebarbative, but once you get into its mindset, then it can have a curious grip on the imagination.
Susan Hertog's "Dangerous Ambition" Ballantine, 493 pages, $30 is about two "New Women" of America and their ever-evolving relationship—one hesitates to say friendship about people so naturally rebarbative—over many decades of the 20th century.
Worse still, the piece required Hahn, the epitome of refinement, to make coarse, rebarbative sounds on her instrument and Lisitsa to bang out "chords" with her flat palm.