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Dreyer’s English: An Utterly Correct Guide to Clarity and Style

Length: 9 hrs and 39 mins
5 out of 5 stars (4 ratings)

Non-member price: $30.38

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Publisher's Summary

Random House presents the audiobook edition of Dreyer's English, written by Benjamin Dreyer, read by Benjamin Dreyer and Alison Fraser.

An indispensable, New York Times best-selling guide to the craft of writing from Random House’s longtime copy chief and one of Twitter’s leading language gurus.

We all write, all the time: books, blogs, tweets, emails, emails, emails - and we all want to write better. Benjamin Dreyer is here to help.

As Random House’s copy chief, Dreyer has upheld the standards of the legendary publisher for more than two decades. He is beloved by authors and editors alike - not to mention his followers on social media - for playfully, brilliantly deconstructing the English language. Dreyer's English is the distillation of everything he has learned from copy-editing thousands of books, the perfect guide not just for writers but for everyone who wants to put their best prose foot forward.

Both authoritative and amusing, Dreyer’s English offers lessons on punctuation, from the underloved semicolon to the enigmatic en-dash; the rules and nonrules of grammar, including why it’s okay to begin a sentence with 'and' or 'but' and to confidently split an infinitive; and why it’s best to avoid the doldrums of the Wan Intensifiers and Throat Clearers, including 'very', 'rather', 'of course', and the dreaded 'actually'. 

And yes: 'Only godless savages eschew the Oxford comma'.

Stuffed with advice, insider wisdom, and fun facts, this audiobook will prove to be invaluable to everyone who wants to shore up their writing skills, mandatory for people who spend their time editing and shaping other people’s prose and - perhaps best of all - an utter treat for anyone who simply revels in language.

This audiobook is written in British English. 

©2019 Benjamin Dreyer (P)2019 Random House Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"An utterly delightful book to read, Dreyer's English will stand among the classics on how to use the English language properly." (Elizabeth Strout)

"Benjamin Dreyer's brilliant, pithy, incandescently intelligent book is to contemporary writing what Geoffrey Chaucer's poetry was to medieval English: a gift that broadens and deepens the art and the science of literature by illustrating that convention should not stand in the way of creativity, so long as that creativity is expressed with clarity and with conviction." (Jon Meacham)

"A complete joy. For those who care about words - and for those who don’t - Dreyer’s English is the book we have all been waiting for. Wise, funny, no-nonsense, stylish and brilliantly practical. Ditch the beach books this year; take this instead." (Rachel Joyce)

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  • Thomas Smith
  • 21-09-2019

Nice exploration of English with a touch of humour

Thought it was overall quite good and informative and also did a good job at picking out either useful or interesting tidbits of English lexical information to talk about.

Probably not the best format for it however because seeing the words written down would definitely have helped with some of the examples.

Also that chapter 14 was way too long and boring!! Famous people and businesses taking correctly spelled historic names or words and misspelling them is not at all interesting to hear about in my humble opinion. A much more condensed chapter there I feel would have been more appropriate although the author did state that it was that original list of misspellings which was his passion project for so many years and which lead to the eventual creation of this novel in the first place so I can see why he made it as detailed and long as he did.

Overall a good listen nonetheless.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-07-2019

Illuminating and funny take on English

This is a very witty and illuminating listen, it has helped me think about some of the rules of language that my state comprehensive school education never prepared me for.
Thank you for the detailed and humourus expalnations, its been easy to listen and to follow and I truly believe it has helped me improve my writing style. If nothing else I'm thinking more about my word choices.
Mr Dreyer you have succesfully made English fun for me again, you've made it possible for me to to reconsider and take action in an area that I have always been afraid to look at, use of language to express myself.