Bill Bryson Troublesome Words

ISBN 13: 9780141040394

Troublesome Words

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9780141040394: Troublesome Words

What is the difference between mean and median, blatant and flagrant, flout and flaunt? Is it whodunnit or whodunit? Do you know? Are you sure?

With Troublesome Words, journalist and bestselling travel-writer Bill Bryson gives us a clear, concise and entertaining guide to the problems of English usage and spelling that has been an indispensable companion to those who work with the written word for over twenty years.

So if you want to discover whether you should care about split infinitives, are cursed with an uncontrollable outbreak of commas or were wondering if that newsreader was right to say 'an historic day', this superb book is the place to find out.

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Troublesome Words

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It is nearly 20 years since Bill Bryson first penned his deliciously witty paean to precision Troublesome Words. Now he has revised it and 60 per cent of the content is new so it's well worth another browse and a place on the desk corner of anyone who likes words and who wants to get things right.

Once a sub-editor at The Times, Bryson is irresistibly drawn to knowing that "to flaunt" means to display ostentatiously but "to flout" means to treat with contempt. Or that a straitjacket may be straight but its name means that its occupant is confined and restricted--in straitened circumstances, perhaps. And can you explain the difference between a Creole and a Pidgin or between egoism and egotism? If not consult Bryson. Then you'll be able to. There's no pedantry or pomposity in Bryson's writing. But he argues: "Just as we all agree that clarity is better served if 'cup' represents a drinking vessel and 'cap' something you put on your head, so too I think the world is a fractionally better place if we agree to preserve a distinction between 'its' and 'it's', between 'I lay down the law' and 'I lie down to sleep', between 'imply' and 'infer' and countless others."

Bryson modestly jokes that this alphabetically arranged book could be subtitled "Even More Things in English Usage That the Author Wasn't Entirely Clear about Until Quite Recently". If only most of us were sure about a fraction of the things Bryson clearly understands very well we might all be more effective writers and speakers. --Susan Elkin

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2010. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 200 x 128 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. What is the difference between mean and median, blatant and flagrant, flout and flaunt? Is it whodunnit or whodunit? Do you know? Are you sure? With Troublesome Words, journalist and bestselling travel-writer Bill Bryson gives us a clear, concise and entertaining guide to the problems of English usage and spelling that has been an indispensable companion to those who work with the written word for over twenty years. So if you want to discover whether you should care about split infinitives, are cursed with an uncontrollable outbreak of commas or were wondering if that newsreader was right to say an historic day , this superb book is the place to find out. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780141040394

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, Troublesome Words, Bill Bryson, What is the difference between mean and median, blatant and flagrant, flout and flaunt? Is it whodunnit or whodunit? Do you know? Are you sure? With "Troublesome Words", journalist and bestselling travel-writer Bill Bryson gives us a clear, concise and entertaining guide to the problems of English usage and spelling that has been an indispensable companion to those who work with the written word for over twenty years. So if you want to discover whether you should care about split infinitives, are cursed with an uncontrollable outbreak of commas or were wondering if that newsreader was right to say 'an historic day', this superb book is the place to find out. Bookseller Inventory # B9780141040394

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd. Book Condition: New. 2009. Paperback. A guide to the problems of English usage and spelling. It lets you discover whether you should care about split infinitives, or were wondering if that newsreader was right to say 'an historic day'. Num Pages: 256 pages. BIC Classification: 2AB; CBD; CBG. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 197 x 129 x 17. Weight in Grams: 186. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780141040394

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