Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Anguished English

Anguished English
by Richard Lederer [427.08 Led]

I first stumbled across this humorous little volume in the late 1980s (it was published in 1987), and it hasn't lost any of its humor since then. Lederer has gathered together a hilarious collection of misuses of the English language. The book is divided into sections -- Schoolishness, The Blunderful World of Bloopers, Inspired Gibberish, and Grammar Gaffes. The first deals with young students' mangling of words in school papers. The second features the kinds of errors or misuses that were popular on the talk shows with Jay Leno and David Letterman, where goof-ups from newspapers would be highlighted. The third section deals with misunderstand phrases or sayings, and seques into the bizarre kinds of misguided statements made by famed malapropters Samuel Goldwyn and Yogi Berra. The final section deals with common misspellings or incorrect definitions, and/or badly placed modifiers. Fans of books like Eats, Shoots and Leaves will enjoy this one, too! Lederer has come out with a whole series of language-inspired humor books, but most of those are very focused in nature. It was not until The Bride of Anguished English in 2000 that he returned to this more general format. Fun for any student of language or for anyone who is "whorrified" and the mis-use of the English language in today's publications and on the internet. -- recommended by Scott C. - Bennett Martin Public Library

[A sequel, The Bride of Anguished English is also available in the library's collection.][ official Richard Lederer web site ]

Have you read this one? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?

New reviews appear every month on the Staff Recommendations page of the BookGuide web site. You can visit that page to see them all, or watch them appear here in the BookGuide blog individually over the course of the entire month.

No comments: