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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but could be slightly improved
The material covered is, without doubt, extensive. The main problem I have is FINDING the bit I'm looking for. I have found myself working through the sections, typing up a comprehensive table of contents for each section - something I would have expected already from a book that is meant to help me make material useful. The lack of adequate table of contents is the...
Published on 26 Feb 2008 by JR

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars For a manual, it's not so manual.
The NSOED definition of "manual" in this context is a small book for "handy use". It's a pity OUP didn't pay heed to its own respected publication's definition. As other reviewers have pointed out, the OSM has a great wealth of advice that is difficult to find when you need it. When I'm working, I find myself relying more on the chance-find of authoritative-looking advice...
Published on 20 Dec 2010 by Mal Veitch


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but could be slightly improved, 26 Feb 2008
By 
JR (Surrey, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Oxford Style Manual (Hardcover)
The material covered is, without doubt, extensive. The main problem I have is FINDING the bit I'm looking for. I have found myself working through the sections, typing up a comprehensive table of contents for each section - something I would have expected already from a book that is meant to help me make material useful. The lack of adequate table of contents is the reason for the missing star in my rating.

Apart from that, I have found both parts of the book very useful (even if I don't agree with using Z all over the place for -ise/-ize words!) and refer to it daily -- using my own table of contents, of course.

The book is particularly useful for writers and editors who are looking to answer a specific question, but I don't think it is as helpful for someone who does not write for a living and therefore doesn't know what question to ask. The order of sections doesn't guide a user in their search to find an elegant style so definitely a book for an expert rather than a novice. Not to worry, I'm using my OSM to help me create an idiot's guide to house style (now does that have a hyphen or not?)
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54 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential book if proper English usage is important to you., 15 Dec 2004
This review is from: The Oxford Style Manual (Hardcover)
Speaking as a person who's currently studying towards an English GCSE I'd just like to say that this book has been invaluable. It offers help on how to use all forms of punctuation - from the basic (full stops) to obscure (did you know the difference between the en rule and em rule?).
It's important to note though that this book isn't a self-help english guide but a reference tool. Writing an essay and you need to know the correct way to quote sources or cite references? Then this book can help. It even has basic guides to other languages - from African Languages to Welsh. These guides have information on, for example, what alphabet they use (with examples if it's a non-roman alphabet) and how to pronounce certain characters.
It also has a particulary helpful section on American English, with a sizeable conversion chart showing what American words mean in 'normal' English (about-face = about-turn, alligator clip = crocoldile clip, antenna [radio, TV] = aerial).
Personally, I don't use the included 'Oxford Dictionary for Writers and Editors', though I'm neither a writer or an editor so this is hardly surprising. The dictionary contains, among other things, abbreviations and foreign words but not definitions.
This book has earned a place on my desk where it is always within easy reach, and except my dictionary, is probably my most used book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars For a manual, it's not so manual., 20 Dec 2010
This review is from: The Oxford Style Manual (Hardcover)
The NSOED definition of "manual" in this context is a small book for "handy use". It's a pity OUP didn't pay heed to its own respected publication's definition. As other reviewers have pointed out, the OSM has a great wealth of advice that is difficult to find when you need it. When I'm working, I find myself relying more on the chance-find of authoritative-looking advice on the net, rather than wasting time finding either no index reference in the OSM, or just some related reference which has me thumbing through and scanning page after page, often with negative results. It's supposed to be for writers on the job, so I expected a quick-reference book. It's not. And the dictionary part is not what you could call comprehensive. So, as far as indexing goes, it's a disappointing offering in an age when the printed reference book needs to compete with the fast-improving reference facilities provided by internet search engines.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent guide and well worth the money, 15 Mar 2009
By 
Rachel Stockley (Berkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Oxford Style Manual (Hardcover)
Easy to understand and extremely comprehensive. The only slight downfall is the index which is very detailed but still omits certain references meaning that it is sometimes hard to find exactly what is needed. An example of this is when looking for information on the style to be used for job titles; this can be found in the "Capitalization" section but there is no clear reference to professional titles/job titles in the index.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Super, smashing great, 30 May 2014
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This review is from: The Oxford Style Manual (Hardcover)
A real help to understanding how best to present the printed book. Although there are some elements that might seem a bit dated overall helps me in my line of work when designing books
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2.0 out of 5 stars Full of what I would call 'Americanisms', 2 Dec 2013
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This review is from: The Oxford Style Manual (Hardcover)
I think that accepting a lot of standard American spellings and phraseology as standard is both clumsy and confusing in the UK, and promotes bad style.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Invaluable in my proofreading work, 13 April 2013
By 
Mrs. S. Billington "sister dew" (Cumbria, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Oxford Style Manual (Hardcover)
I work as a freelance proofreader, and I wouldn't be without this book. Lots of the style manuals I work with recommend referring to it as a primary source, and it has seen a lot of use since I bought it less than a year ago.
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The Oxford Style Manual by Robert Ritter (Hardcover - 10 April 2003)
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