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The Elements of Style Paperback – 1 November 2020
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- Publisher : Fingerprint! Publishing (1 November 2020); Prakash Books India Pvt. Ltd, 113-A, First Floor, Ansari Road, Darya Ganj, New Delhi-110002 Ph.: (011) 2626 5358, 2326 5389
- Language : English
- Paperback : 108 pages
- ISBN-10 : 8194898862
- ISBN-13 : 978-8194898863
- Item Weight : 80 g
- Dimensions : 12.7 x 1.3 x 19.7 cm
- Country of Origin : India
- Importer : 011-23247062
- Packer : Prakash Books India Pvt. Ltd, 113-A, First Floor, Ansari Road, Darya Ganj, New Delhi-110002
- Generic Name : Book
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To give a few examples:
'Less than ten' is incorrect, whilst 'fewer than ten' is correct.
'This man, who is my friend,' is better written 'This man, my friend,'
'I should like tea' is usually correct, 'I would like tea' is usually not.
'Worthwhile' is best avoided altogether - not exactly incorrect but poor style.
And so it goes on.
I found this book moderately useful, although it does seem to concentrate on American English rather than UK English. Some of the advice doesn't apply on this side of the Atlantic. For example, we tend not to use `most' as an abbreviation of `almost' so we're not going to make the mistake of saying `most everyone' as many Americans do.
Some reviewers commented that the kindle version was hard to read, but I didn't have any problems with it. I think it must have been reformatted as a result of some early negative reviews.
On the whole this is a great book for anyone who's got into sloppy writing habits (like me). Stephen King recommends it in his book `On Writing' - and recommendations don't get much stronger than that. It's probably fair to summarise the message of the book by saying `express yourself in as few words as possible and be as precise as possible'.
Each chapter consists of an instruction for an element of language, followed by two or more examples. The editor has chosen to format both the instructions and the examples in the same font, with the same indentation. You'll soon find it very difficult to read, even more so if you want to use it as a reference book while you write or edit.
This edition omits the name of the editor or the publisher, perhaps in shame at the insult they've done to an excellent work. I would return my copy if possible.
William Strunck Jr. The Elements of style . Kindle Edition.
The public domain edition was published in 1918, and is half the length of recent editions. It predates recent language, predates political correctness, and arguably predates the shorter modern form of `plain English'.
Buyers should be aware that they are not getting the modern Strunk and White edition (especially when Amazon have pooled reviews for modern editions with the 1918 version!).
At a mere 60 pages, the 1918 Strunk edition is the most concise English language style guide. This is a major advantage when compared with more recent, more wordy style guides.