Comma Sutra

Comma Sutra: Position Yourself for Success with Good Grammar
by Laurie Rozakis, Ph.D.
Reference book. 248 pp.
Adams Media. 2005.

I love a good grammar book. I'm somewhat a freak of nature in that regard. But I just can't help it. There's something passionate and inspiring about comma placement discussions. So, naturally, when I saw that this book was one of my selections for the Quality Paperback Book club, I had to actually buy it. I mean, with a title like this, how could you lose? I think punctuation's sexy, so it's about time we started converting the rest of the world.

Unfortunately, the book just doesn't do it. Instead of keeping me up at night, wrapped in its loving arms, I had a tendency to nod off directly to sleep. It was rather disappointing. There are moments that are humorous and thematically appropriate (for example, chapter ten is "Four Play: Four Common Grammar Headaches"). The examples are often taken from jokes, usually involving sexual innuendo. Some of the anecdotes are worth jotting down and keeping. But in the end, the author's voice and style aren't strong enough to carry away the title. So the book becomes boring.

Of course, I also disagree with Rozakis, Ph.D. (hey, my family believes strongly in mocking Ph.D.s and points to my crazy aunt as evidence that more education just makes you stupider) doesn't even get all her grammar rules right. You would think this would be something her editor would catch. Go figure.

In the end, I say not to bother with this book. If you want an entertaining read about grammar, pick up Lynne Truss's Eats, Shoots & Leaves instead.

1 comment:

Nemesis said...

Yay for me! I am so excited to start reading that one.