You’ve heard of The Joy of Cooking. Now meet The Joy of Syntax, a handy little grammar guide that will give you all the ingredients you need to cook up a proper sentence.
But fear not, writers, this isn’t a boring high school primer. Rather, it’s a straightforward, concise guide to everything a wannabe grammarian needs to know. Conjunctions, prepositions, the Oxford comma, flat adverbs, and “the confusing roles of the letter S” all get their due in grammar columnist June Casagrande’s new book. She rails against the “grammar snob Ponzi scheme” of haughty grammarians, citing that grammar rules are “derived from how people actually use the language.”
“Grammar, therefore, is at its heart a set of standards based on common practice,” she continues. “If suddenly everyone in the English-speaking world started saying him wants instead of he wants, sometime in the next century him would be correct, sanctioned by every authority alive.”
Casagrande, a freelance copy editor for several publications, has published four books on grammar, including It Was the Best of Sentences, It Was the Worst of Sentences and The Best Punctuation Book, Period.
Casagrande promises the book contains “real grammar, the kind that you’d otherwise need a linguistics degree to acquire. But it’s designed specifically for word nerds who find that learning grammar, when it’s done just right, can be a real joy.”