12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Well said, sir!,
This review is from: Mind the Gaffe: The Penguin Guide to Common Errors in English (Paperback)
This is an excellent guide to English usage, common errors and much else.
Trask can spot pretentious nonsense at forty paces and, thankfully, doesn't sit on the fence. The result is an authoritative book that sometimes made me laugh out loud as the author exposes and debunks some of the myths and nonsense that are still regularly encountered.
I share his dislike of the incomprehensible affected twaddle that so many academics and managers inflict on us.
I've since read a number of R.L. Trask's books and they're all outstanding. 'Language: The Basics' is brilliant and his guide to punctuation is quite simply the clearest and best available. Mr Trask is a truly talented writer and communicator. I wish more academics could write and explain ideas like him.
Those starting out on trying to improve their English might just occasionally find it a bit deep. I'd say 'Troublesome Words' by Bill Bryson is an excellent companion, but I'd definitely want this book to go with it. Reading two different, and well written, explanations is often a great help when dealing with an unfamiliar topic.
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Initial post: 9 Jul 2010 10:52:15 BDT
N. Scott says:
Thank you for such a helpful review and also for the recommendations.
In reply to an earlier post on 25 Jul 2010 20:52:41 BDT
Stephen Town says:
Thank you, kind sir. I'm an interested layman who tries to write as well as I can. Another book that's helpful, clear and well written is 'How Not To Write' by Terence Denham. Although it's slightly embarassing to now admit it, I'd never really understand 'passive' and 'active' and a number of other terms. This book explains these and many other areas exceptionally well.
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