Jo of Research Services suggests One Day in the Life of the English Language by Frank Cioffi
Do you know whether the question mark goes inside or outside the quotation marks? No matter. Everyone can find something to learn and even enjoy in the book One Day in the Life of the English Language: A Microcosmic Usage Handbook by English professor Frank Cioffi.
Rather than make up sentences to demonstrate correct usage as is done in many grammar handbooks, Cioffi examines the English language as it is actually used, using more recently published examples to ensure that the sentences were composed by a professional writer and checked by at least one editor. I especially enjoyed the 50-word microglossary which reminded me of just how much formal grammar I have forgotten.
For more books on English language fun, try….
Between You and Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen by Mary Norris
Who knew grammar could be so much fun? Check out this hilarious “grammar memoir” and find out why a question mark is like a lazy person.
Woe is I: The Grammarphobe’s Guide to Better English in Plain English by Patricia T. O’Conner
New York Times Book Review editor O’Conner guides you through grammatical pitfalls with wit and insight. There’s a companion edition for kids, too!
Word Nerd: Dispatches from the Games, Grammar, and Geek Undergrounds by John D. Williams, Jr.
If word games are your thing, this book is for you! Get the inside story on the greatest SCRABBLE plays and players of all times as well as insight into other games like anagrams and palindromes. Author Williams served as the executive director and official spokesman for the National SCRABBLE association.
If I Was You…: And Alot More Grammar Mistakes You Might Be Making by Lauren Sussman
This book includes sample sentences highlighting the grammatical error followed by a straightforward explanation of why it’s wrong and the correct usage.
Kiss My Asterisk: A Feisty Guide to Punctuation and Grammar by Jenny Baranick
English professor Baranick takes on the most common punctuation and grammatical errors in a laugh-out-loud way.