I finished reading this non-fiction book yesterday before bed, and I enjoyed having my grammar lessons given in such a humourous way.
The author is a college English professor who teaches a class on grammar called Writing Skills, and she has written this book to impart those skills to a wider audience. The first chapter is Know Thyself: Spelling, followed by It’s Complicated: One Word, Two Words, or Three Words; Quality Control: Words That Don’t Make the Grade; Missed Periods: Run-On Sentences; More Than a Feeling: Commas; I Do: Apostrophes; Drumroll, Please: Colons; Goldilocks and the Three Bars: En Dashes, Em Dashes, and Hyphens; The Scarlet Punctuation Mark: The Ellipsis; Mary Ann or Ginger: Punctuation with Quotation Marks; That’s Hot: Capitalization; Freudian Slip: Using You; How Old Do You Think I Am?: Numbers; Keepin’ It Real: Grammar Myth Busting; Avoid Premature Ejaculation: Email Etiquette; Looks Matter: Formatting Academic Papers, Letters, and Résumes; and Textual Healing: Proofreading. As can be seen from the chapter headings, the author indeed promises a feisty book; in her sample sentences to illustrate a given point, said sentence could be something like “Here’s the premise: She opens a sex shop next door to the boutique on Rodeo Drive that snubbed her” or “Jake Miller, who kisses like he’s giving CPR, was the most popular guy in school” or “Brad unfriended Jennifer on Facebook, changed his phone number, and adopted several children with a woman he just met”. At the end of each chapter are Exercises: sentences that the reader needs to correct (the Answer Key is at the back of the book for the Exercises). In fact, about the only thing the author does not cover is the asterisk.
I very much enjoyed reading this book, and I will try to remember not to use an excess number of commas in the future in my Book Reviews.