Grammar Snobs Are Great Big Meanies
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What do suicidal pandas, doped-up rock stars, and a naked Pamela Anderson have in common? They’re all a heck of a lot more interesting than reading about predicate nominatives and hyphens. June Casagrande knows this and has invented a whole new twist on the grammar book. Grammar Snobs Are Great Big Meanies is a laugh-out-loud funny collection of anecdotes and essays on grammar and punctuation, as well as hilarious critiques of the self-appointed language experts. Chapters include: I’m Writing This While Naked—The Oh-So Steamy Predicate Nominative Semicolonoscopy—Colons, Semicolons, Dashes, and Other Probing Annoyances I’ll Take "I Feel Like a Moron" for $200, Alex—When to Put Punctuation Inside Quotation Marks Snobbery Up with Which You Should Not Put Up—Prepositions Is That a Dangler in Your Memo or Are You Just Glad to See Me? Hyphens—Life-Sucking, Mom-and-Apple-Pie-Hating, Mime-Loving, Nerd-Fight-Inciting Daggers of the Damned Casagrande delivers practical and fun language lessons not found anywhere else, demystifying the subject and taking it back from the snobs. In short, it’s a grammar book people will actually want to read—just for the fun of it. From Publishers Weekly Hoping to make grammar both accessible and amusing, Casagrande offers practical and entertaining lessons on common uses and unfortunate abuses of the English language. The author, a southern California newspaper columnist, memorably delineates "who" and "whom"; "can" and "may"; "affect" and "effect"; and provides pithy primers on the perennially problematic dark alleys of language (subjunctives, how to use punctuation marks around quoted material, possessive gerunds). In brief, cleverly titled sections, she addresses a slew of grammar and punctuation questions: "To Boldly Blow" examines the issue of split infinitives, "Snobbery Up With Which You Should Not Put" tackles prepositions and "Is That a Dangler in Your Memo or Are You Just Glad to See Me?" pokes fun at dangling modifiers and the confusion they create. By also touching on e-mail and text messaging, where traditional rules are commonly ignored, Casagrande keeps the discussion current. She maintains her sass and her sense of humor throughout, at one point calling the hyphen "a nasty, tricky, evil little mark that gets its kicks igniting arguments...the Bill Maher of punctuation." Readers intimidated by style manuals and Lynne Truss will enjoy this populist grammar reference. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. From Booklist The author of a grammar column for L.A. community newspapers, Casagrande brings a lively approach to her overview of basic grammar. Sensing that people are intimidated by grammar, she uses humor to promote her down-to-earth approach to the topic, labeling grammatical purists as snobs and bullies. In short, pithily titled chapters, she addresses common grammar problems, pointing out, for example, the distinction between who and whom in "For Whom the Snob Trolls," explaining the split infinitive in "To Boldly Blow," and discussing prepositions at the end of sentences in "Snobbery Up with Which You Should Not Put." She is most helpful when addressing the language shortcuts taken in text messaging and e-mail, topics that have not yet been fully addressed in traditional style manuals. Speaking of which, she gets in her fair share of jabs at The Chicago Manual of Style in the particularly funny chapter "The Kids Are All Wrong," devoted to rock-music-related language issues. Both sassy and edifying, Casagrande's little tome will be especially useful to those in search of basic grammar instruction. Joanne Wilkinson Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved From AudioFile Lay, lie, lain? Drink, drank, drunken? The slightest perceived misuse of English, or American, can rouse the ire of the "grammar snobs," who delight in savaging those who dare sully the language. Through the delightful voice of Shelly Frasier, author Casagrande gives listeners a set of arrows with which to pierce the grammar snobs' inflated sense of self-importance, using liberal doses of humor. Thanks to Frasier's sharp comic timing, you'll get the full effect of the author's self-effacing expos&EACUTE; of grammatical crime--and be relieved to know most of the mistakes you've been accused of making are usually misdemeanors. Becoming aware of the vast gray zone of usage makes the English language a friendlier place. D.J.B. © AudioFile 2006, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.