Friday, August 24, 2007

Book Recommendation

Spunk & Bite by Arthur Plotnick
Review by Jane E. Hoppe

Spunk & Bite is the ham to Strunk & White’s eggs, the salt to their pepper, the bloom booster to their weed killer. Strunk & White is the noble march of the penguins; Spunk & Bite is exhilarating eagles’ flight. Grounding is good. So is soaring. Plotnick’s advice has rules, just as Strunk & White’s classic Elements of Style does. But Plotnick encourages writers not to remain penguinized, and he shows how to fly—with both flight and crash examples from literature. How could advice labeled “The Confident Tagmeister,” “Words with Foreign Umami,” and “Rope-a-Trope Contenders” not inspire creativity? If you are a writer, do not miss this fresh education. If you are simply a word lover, do not miss this fresh education. Every chapter delightfully embodies Plotnick’s phrase: “language: acrobatic and incandescent.” A bonus is Plotnick’s light tone—you will laugh as you learn.

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