Dog Eared

Books we love

Barbara's Usage Books

Language columnist Barbara Wallraff, who we interview in this week's "Behind the Dictionary" feature, recommends these books on usage:

Garner's Modern American Usage, by Bryan A. Garner. "The best single book on the niceties of contemporary American usage."

Modern English Usage, by H.W. Fowler. "The 1st or 2nd edition (not the 3rd edition, Burchfield's Fowler's, which is an entirely different animal). A classic, and a pleasure to read."

The Careful Writer, by Theodore M. Bernstein, "among other usage books by Bernstein. Also classics."

Lapsing Into a Comma and The Elephants of Style, by Bill Walsh, "the Washington Post's very smart, no-nonsense copy chief."

The Language Instinct, by Steven Pinker. "Fascinating information about how language 'works.'"

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