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A Writer's Reference: With Mla's and Apa's 1999 Guidelines Plastic Comb – Jan 1999

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 7 reviews
61 of 64 people found the following review helpful
This is a "must have" writer or editor's tool. 30 April 2002
By Victoria Tarrani - Published on
Format: Paperback
Describing the contents of one of the most beneficial grammar books I study is difficult, though it is easy to read, research, check, verify, and use. Diana Hacker has written many books to help people understand and use the English language in the correct way. This is a heritage that also protects the language for future generations, just as dictionaries do.
The Main Menu is divided into topics and the sections that relate to it. Within each of these is a category breakdown, as follows:
(C) Composing and revising, (D) Document Design, (E) Effective sentences, and (W) Word Choices.
(G) Grammatical sentences, (T) ESL Trouble spots, (P) Punctuation, and (S) Spelling and mechanics.
Research/ Basic Grammar:
(R) Research Writing, (M) MLA documentation, (A) Alternative styles of documentation, and (B) Basic grammar.
The index is also helpful. I selected a topic at random--adjective phrases: (1) Infinite, 350, (2) participle, 349, (3) prepositional, 348-349, (4) punctuation of, 198, 205.
The format displays what type of information is on that page. (1) Page 350 is B for basic grammar information, as are 348 and 349. Pages 98 and 205 are P or punctuation.

This book is on my desk, and is one of the most useful tools I own. I cannot recommend it enough. Any serious writer, editor, or student needs it. 5 stars.
Victoria Tarrani
30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
An APA or Mla must have! 22 Nov. 2001
By Annie B. - Published on
Format: Plastic Comb Verified Purchase
Don't listen to anything else you've heard; this is THE must-have guide for any undergrad or grad student who is tasked with writing any kind of research or term paper. The author provides easily understandable examples and explanations of APA and Mla formats with helpful grammar tips. This guide is a must have for any serious student or writer. Kudos to Ms. Hacker!
41 of 48 people found the following review helpful
Great reference 2 May 2003
By jif101 - Published on
Format: Plastic Comb
I purchased this book as a requirement for a college course -- and this is the only college "textbook" I haven't disposed of in some way. Its labeled tabs make it easy to access information with the flick of a finger, and the front and back menus make it somewhat easy to find the information you're looking for. My only complaint about this book is the lack of a comprehensive index. For instance, if I wanted to find information about comma usage, I cannot simply look up "comma". I must utilize the menu and think in a heirarchal way -- Punctiation --> The comma. There have also been times I was unable to find information because I was unable to categorize what I was looking for.
Another aspect of this book is the online help. The book provides a URL where you can find supplemental information about the book and take interactive quizzes to test your grammar knowledge.
Despite some of its quirks, I would highly recommend this book as a good reference.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Most useful book for all levels of writers and editors... 29 Jan. 2001
By L. Runkle - Published on
Format: Plastic Comb Verified Purchase
This cogent little volume lays out the essentials of writing good prose. It not only covers the necessary mechanics, but also covers information on research, revision, and document design. Every editor needs this book, and should purchase new editions as they are released.
The genius behind this book is in the organization, including the indexing. Many books are full of all-too-hidden gems. This book is full of information that is easily found, easily used, and easily understood. The tutorials on how to use the book are quite helpful, and should not be ignored by experienced writers. The billable hours you will save in the future are well worth the small investment of your time.
I work as an adult-education instructor, and freelance technical writer/editor. This book has helped me help other people. Without this book, it would have been much harder to do the same work.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Well organized and comprehensive 29 April 2001
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Plastic Comb
As a field technician and computer professional, part of my job was to write daily project reports and monthly summary reports. I read through this book for a Ph.D. supervised sociology course with a mandatory journalism assignment, and it was a thorough review of important fundamentals that we all tend to forget over time. It is well organized and indexed for quick look-up reference. I've decided to keep it for my personal reference library, because it is too comprehensive for just one reading. I also like the reviews I was reading for Rebecca Burnett's book "Technical Communication."
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