Reviews

The Elements Of Style, by William Strunk Jr.

autistic_dragon's review

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5.0

Short and to the point, this is a nuts-and-bolts guide all writers in the English language should read and use.

ellenw's review

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4.0

I love Geoff Pullum's critiques of this book; there's really much to criticize. For all its faults, though, it's a very entertaining book, and an entertaining book about grammar.

reality's review

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3.0

snooty but good

jnepal's review

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5.0

:)

(I daren’t mess up my pretty review by utilizing words else it will transpire that I shall reveal my ignorance so soothly).

teelock's review

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5.0

The Elements of Style was listed as one of the 100 best and most influential books written in English since 1923 by Time in its 2011 list.

"Make every word tell" but "Omit needless words."


The book frames this within a triplet credited to an influential lecturer:

Omit needless words
Use active voice
Use parallel construction on concepts that are parallel

[Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that he make every word tell.]


A Splendid Trophy For All Who Are Interested In Reading And Writing.

kikipower123's review

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4.0

Very useful and enjoyable, but as a modern writer and reader, I just don't see all of the suggestions as being feasible anymore. Still, most are applicable.

theresidentbookworm's review

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5.0

I can truly say I have learned a lesson from William Strunk Jr. (or Professor Will as I will now refer to him): I am a dirty, awful sinner. I use the word very too much, and I'm not clear and concise. I overuse adverbs, and I am not worthy. Professor Will, have pity on my soul. You are the man. Let no one tell you otherwise. Okay, apology over, review commencing.

I recently found a copy of The Elements of Style in the reference section at Bookstock (aka the best book sale ever) and knew it was a must-have purchase. Stephen King referenced it frequently in his book On Writing , which is an excellent book on writing and his experiences as a writer, and if The Elements of Style is good enough for Stephen King it is good enough for me. King's recommendation was spot on. Professor Will knows his stuff. He admires clear and concise languages and simple writing. I especially enjoyed the section on all the words he felt were misused or that he just didn't like. Professor Wills was the type of English professor I would probably like. E.B. White (yes, of Charlotte's Web fame) certainly admired his old teacher and painted a great picture of him in the introduction to this edition.

High school students who take four years of English might not learn as much about writing in those classes as they would by reading The Elements of Style. I know this because I proofread at least a hundred papers in both English and Journalism classes, and every single one of Professor Will's rules were broken at least once. I know I have broken several (and will break some in this review). Every young writer should have a copy of this book. There are a lot of books that tell us how to write and where to write and what to write about and how to get published, but this one is the necessary one. Do yourself a favor, and read this book. It doesn't even break 100 pages. It's easy to read, and there are helpful examples. Writers should read The Elements of Style for themselves and their readers. Clearer writing makes for better books.

I would just like to end this review with a quote for my mom. This is a longstanding issue between us: “Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.”

dissidentreviews's review

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5.0

This manual alone won't make you a bestselling author. In fact, certain divine writers break every rule in the book. (I'm talking about Heimito von Doderer.) But The Elements of Style can help you find your own. Highly recommendable for students and mediocre writers.

rickcummingsjr's review

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5.0

A short morning read, my second time. Helpful and insightful.

achwahoo15's review

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5.0

Concise, compact, practical, and enjoyable to read. The kind of book I'd fill with notes and highlights and keep in my desk drawer if it wasn't a library copy.