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on 17 April 2014
The book appears to be excellent and the clearest I have seen in its explanations and examples and I am really pleased with it. However, the web address for '[...]' is not available, stating that it is suspended. I don't know if this is permanent or if it has changed to another web site. Would appreciate response to this.
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on 22 March 2013
I am an American living in the UK and regularly perform with my local am dram company. I bought this book to help me do a RP accent for a production. Admittedly, I have some advantages for learning the accent. I have been living in south east London for four years, and have an RP-speaking husband to coach me.

Nevertheless, this book was a big help. At first, I found it a bit intimidating (lots of scary diagrams of mouth shapes and air movement, and so many ways your pronunciation can go wrong), but that's because this book is the real deal: authoritative and comprehensive. It laid the groundwork for me to start learning properly. It was also a useful reference to turn to when my husband told me something 'sounded wrong' but he couldn't say why. There are lots of exercises. Particularly useful for me was the 'Top Tips for North Americans' feature. Naturally, the book includes access to MP3 files so that you can listen to samples.

Ultimately, I think I pulled off the accent. Certainly, I don't think I could have done any better without personal tuition from a professional dialect coach.
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on 2 February 2014
I bought this book to help 'flatten' my regional accent to a 'near-modern RP' version, rather than learn other, more narrowly-defined forms of RP, so I can only comment on a limited part of the contents.

Although aimed at actors I found the section on modern RP to be both useful and interesting for my own purposes.
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on 15 October 2015
Have just started reading but already finding it very helpful. This book really demystifies standard English accents!
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on 11 May 2013
I have a collection of Pronuncuation books, but this is the best one. It teaches things like which zone in the mouth you should use to speak and that's one of the most important things you need to learn to do accents, and you just can't find it in other pronunciation books.
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on 4 November 2015
This is a reasonable handbook with reasonable recordings which all the same shies away from the standard terminology of phonetics (to be fair, many similar books do the same). One pet peeve, for example, is "crunching" instead of "coalescence" (or maybe "assimilation"?). For goodness sake, why is this done? If you were writing a pop science book about astronomy, would you talk about "big round things that go round the Sun", or "planets"? Gee, even if you were writing about body-building, you wouldn't talk of the "big soft blob on your upper leg that you want to make firmer". You'd talk of "quads (or even quadriceps) exercises". Are actors less bright than body builders? Are people who read about pronunciation morons?
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on 23 March 2015
I don't think you can ask for much more than this. Very good. Good tips.
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on 29 March 2013
I bought this book because I had found "How to do Accents" very helpful. However I hadn't actually opened it until I got a last minute audition. The script involved a military RP accent but because the casting was the next day I had no time to see a voice coach or trawl the internet for suitable voice clips. I was so relieved I had this book and the MP3 files to hand, it meant that with only a few hours notice I was able to go into the audition feeling confident and I'm pleased to report I got the job! Even if I never pick this book up again (unlikely) it has already proved to be priceless. My advice: buy it before you need it!
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on 25 June 2013
I was lucky enough to study under both Edda Sharpe and Jan Haydn-Rowles at an acting school between 1999 and 2002. I was far from their best student, but I learned a great deal from their instruction and can testify to their capabilities as dialect coaches. I have since picked up their first two books, and there's literally nothing in them that isn't immediately practicable, or in some way insightful - the resource recordings available as mp3s are invaluable, as are the internet resources listed within the books.

The books are also funny and engaging, and very clearly laid out. I'd like to give a more 'balanced' review, but I can't fault them. I'll be referring to these books for the rest of my career and trust them implicitly.
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on 2 February 2016
Very good and clear. Could do with a picture to show the vowel positions all on one chart. Excellent description of variants of different eras; I now know how to speak like Terry-Thomas!
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