Eats Shoots and Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation by Lynne Truss

Lynn Truss takes a witty look at the use of punctuation and explains the use of all those annoying periods, apostrophes and semi-colons. Since punctuation is a part of grammar, this is a grammar book, but there the similarity stops since Truss only discusses punctuation.

Eats Shoots and Leaves gives a good technical overview of one of the areas where most new writers have the most trouble. Half rant and half witty-commentary, the lessons that Truss conveys are easily understood and can help almost any beginning writer to feel more confident about matters of punctuation, and for beginners that is often a great benefit.

Truss’s advice is probably more useful in the UK than the US since, by the author’s own admission, many of the rules are different between the two countries. She does an admirable job of pointing out the differences, but for anyone who is not heavily into punctuation, this can rapidly grow confusing.

I have found this book is not one I keep as a reference work to go back to for daily advice, but it is a valuable read and worth keeping on my shelf for an occasional repeat reading.

This is probably most valuable for beginners and intermediate writers, and I have rated it for beginners.

Four stars for ease of reading.
Four stars for usefulness of information