All of us count on a wise and friendly voice to warn us when we are about to trip into usage traps. We want to be cautioned without being chastised. This book is the perfect example of such a voice. It offers advice on writing and speaking with the sage understanding that language is not just a matter of standardised mechanics of grammar, but also a form of art for the conscientious copy-editor, writer, or conversationalist. For instance, the book calls into question the injunction that adverbs must be eliminated, willy-nilly. And it is reassuring to note that we can aspire to perfection without turning into pedants.