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Right, Wrong, and Risky: A Dictionary of Today's American English Usage Hardcover – December 12, 2005
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Full-time writer and former professor of communications Davidson offers a dictionary that "views the real world of today's American English, identifying usage questions that are debatable, citing conflicting answers, and offering risk-free solutions for each conflict." Presented in straight alphabetical order, all of the standard usage questions are covered, including a or an; comprise or constitute; and data is or data are.What makes this dictionary so useful for a general audience (and readable for browsers) is the vast array of contemporary examples of usage, ranging from New Yorker cartoons to storefront signs. In addition, Davidson addresses many common punctuation pitfalls, including the current ubiquitous abuse of the apostrophe. Browsers will enjoy the colorful, interesting backstories on the origins of terms such as ground zero, on the sudden warming to the phrase girl talk, and on the widely misunderstood use of the word Neanderthal. And students struggling with language issues will especially appreciate Davidson's up-to-date, exceptionally clear explanations of common trouble spots. Joanne Wilkinson
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Top customer reviews
Entries are listed in alphabetical order, followed by a lucid discussion of the word or words in question.I've given it to students and friends who are lovers of language.
Not just a reference work; it's fun to dip into at moments of leisure.
I'm buying four copies for Christmas gifts, I'm sure they'll be well received.