Title: Mind the Gaffe
Author: R. L. Trask
Page Count/Review Word Count: 310
This book is nothing more and nothing less than an interesting dive into the murky world of the English language and of grammar. Trask highlights a number of common mistakes that plague our society, and in this book he explains what makes them wrong and how to fix them.
It’s an interesting enough read if you’re a linguist or if you love the English language, but this definitely isn’t for everyone – it digs pretty deep, and it’s not always easy to follow unless you’re familiar already with a lot of the concepts that you’re supposed to be taught in secondary school. Sure, it can be a dry read, but it also seems like a vital one, at least to me – if you’re an author, you’re always looking to improve your writing, and there’s plenty for you to learn here whether you’re a writer or not.
I’m not sure that there’s much less for me to say about Mind the Gaffe – the concept is simple enough, and the author stretches it out across a full length book. If anything, it feels like it could’ve been a little shorter, but it could also have been a lot longer – there’s a lot to take in and a lot of common mistakes, and even though some of them are more common than others, there are still omissions because there just has to be, by the very nature of this sort of book. The English language is so vast that it would be impossible to encompass it all within the pages of a single book, but Trask has a pretty good go at it. Not a book to be taken lightly, but it’s worth having a copy of it if you’re a writer.