Accidence Will Happen
By Oliver Kamm
Are standards of English alright - or should that be all right?To knowingly split an infinitive or not to?And what about ending a sentence with preposition, or for that matter beginning one with 'and'?We learn language by instinct, but good English, the pedants tell us, requires rules. Yet, as Oliver Kamm demonstrates, many of the purists' prohibitions are bogus and can be cheerfully disregarded. ACCIDENCE WILL HAPPEN is an authoritative and deeply reassuring guide to grammar, style and the linguistic conundrums we all face.'A unique and indispensable guide to usage' STEVEN PINKER'An immensely intelligent and playful polemic, cheeky and erudite by turns...certainly gets the blood pumping, so do read it' THE TIMES'A superb book' INDEPENDENT
By Vikram Seth
'I have so carefully mapped the corners of my mindThat I am forever waking in a lost country...'SUMMER REQUIEM traces the immutable shifting of the seasons, the relentless rhythms of a great world that both 'gifts and harms'. Luminous, resonant and profound, these poems trace the dying days of summer, 'the hour of rust', when memory is haunted by loss and decay. But in the silence that follows, as the soul is cast adrift, there is also reconciliation with the transience of all things; the knowledge that there is a place, 'changeable, that will not betray'.
The Collected Poems of Dylan Thomas
By Dylan Thomas
Like Shakespeare and Joyce before him, Dylan Thomas expanded our sense of what the English language can do.He was the creator of one of the most distinctive and exciting of literary styles - sensuous, playful, rhythmically forceful yet subtly musical, and full of memorable lines. 'Do not go gentle into that good night', 'Fern Hill' and other poems have become anthology favourites; his 'play for voices' Under Milk Wood a modern classic.In life, Thomas's exuberant style and meteor-like passing turned him into a cultural icon; the favourite author of The Beatles and Richard Burton, he gave Bob Dylan his name and continues to inspire artists from Peter Blake to Patti Smith.This new edition of his poems, edited and annotated by Dylan Thomas expert John Goodby, commemorates the centenary of Thomas's birth. With recently discovered material and accessible critique, it looks at his body of work in a fresh light and takes us to the beating heart of Thomas's poetry.
By Ian Rankin, Mark Thomson
First performed at Edinburgh's Royal Lyceum Theatre, the first stage play from the SUNDAY TIMES No.1 bestselling author of SAINTS OF THE SHADOW BIBLE.It's been 25 years since Alfred Chalmers was convicted of the gruesome murder of four young women in Edinburgh. Isobel McArthur, Scotland's first Chief Superintendent, was the woman responsible for putting him behind bars, but the case has haunted her ever since.Now, with her retirement approaching, McArthur decides the time has come for answers. To uncover the truth, she revisits the case and interviews Chalmers for the first time in decades. But her decision rips opens old wounds and McArthur is soon caught up in a web of corruption, psychological mind-games and deceit that threatens not only her own life, but those of her fellow officers and even her own daughter.Tense, gritty and hard-hitting, DARK ROAD is the first ever stage play from bestselling crime writer Ian Rankin, co-written by the Royal Lyceum's Artistic Director Mark Thomson.
Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam
By Omar Khayyam
The best-loved, bestselling poem ever published, brought up to date with a sumptuous new look.Edward FitzGerald's much-loved, often-quoted, bestselling 1859 translation of the RUBAIYAT, with Attar's charming narrative poem, BIRD PARLIAMENT. Also featuring an extensive new introduction with notes and chronology.Awake! for Morning in the Bowl of NightHas flung the Stone that put the Stars to Flight:And Lo! the Hunter of the East has caughtThe Sultan's Turret in a Noose of Light.
Off the Beaten Track
By Laura Stoddart
From the author of UP THE GARDEN PATH, a little book of quotes about travel and exploration from a much-loved illustrator.Captain Cook confidently declaring that no man will ever venture further than he has... Richard Burton musing on how to keep a wife alive in the tropics... the unreliable Sir John Mandeville spinning his traveller's tales...OFF THE BEATEN TRACK is a collection of quotations from intrepid travellers, such as Christopher Columbus, Vasco da Gama, Marco Polo, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, Mary Kingsley, Isabella Bird, Captain Scott and Freya Stark - all of them are here, some of them awe-struck at the majesty of their surroundings and others distinctly unimpressed. Laura Stoddart's delicious illustrations seize on the unexpected, and make a comment on what the author doesn't say. Her many admirers will find that this wittily chosen anthology has all the charm of her very successful first book, UP THE GARDEN PATH.
The Harlan Ellison Hornbook
By Harlan Ellison
A major collection of Harlan Ellison's incomparable, troublemaking, uncompromising, confrontational essays plus a foreward by award-winning author Robert Crais.
10 Rules of Writing
By Elmore Leonard
The classic, must-have guide for every aspiring or successful writer from one of America's most respected authors."These are rules I've picked up along the way to help me remain invisible when I'm writing a book, to help me show rather than tell what's taking place in the story." - Elmore LeonardFor aspiring writers and lovers of the written word, this concise guide breaks down the writing process with simplicity and clarity. From adjectives and exclamation points to dialect and what he calls 'hooptedoodle', Elmore Leonard explains what to avoid, what to aspire to, and what to do when it sounds like "writing" (rewrite).Beautifully designed, filled with free-flowing, elegant illustrations, and specially priced, ELMORE LEONARD'S 10 RULES OF WRITING is the perfect writer's - and reader's - guide.
By Jane Gleeson-White
What are the classic works of Australian literature? And what can they tell us about Australians and the land they live in? Providing a selected overview of Australia's greatest literature, Australian Classics is an accessible companion to the literature and history of writing in Australia from the nineteenth century to the present. Australian Classics celebrates many of the country's beloved novels, poems, short stories, children's books and seminal works of non-fiction. It also contains contributions on their favourite Australian books from many distinguished writers and readers, including Helen Garner, Les Murray and Tim Winton.Australian Classics is an impassioned and inspiring feast of the great writing that makes exalted readers of us all and a testament to the wide-ranging and remarkable literature of this continent.
Buttering Parsnips, Twocking Chavs
By Martin H. Manser, David Pickering
A more-ishly browsable collection of words and phrases, linguistic quirks, lexical oddities and syntactic surprises.Our langauge is one of delight and curiosity. BUTTERING PARSNIPS, TWOCKING CHAVS is a guided tour of English, exploring the origins of words, their changing meaning, lexical peculiarities, word games and lost words, presented in lists, small passages of narrative text, amusing quotations and nuggets of amazing facts.This must-have compendium shows that words have a matchless power to entertain. Here you will find enough new words and phrases to last a lifetime. Idioms frolic beside cliches, catchphrases, proverbs, eponyms, acronyms, spoonerisms and split infinitives. Text messages cavort alongside business jargon and rap slang to produce a language that is both witty and bizarre, and sometimes frankly outstanding.So whether you're a yuppie or a woopie, a sinbad or dinky, a spod or even a wazzock, these pages will provide endless hours of delight and fascination.
Cheerio Tom, Dick And Harry
By Ruth Wajnryb
'Wajnryb is the grammarian you always wanted: wise, wearing her erudition lightly and enlivening it with sly humour.' - Kirkus ReviewsRuth Wajnryb embarks on a voyage of discovery among the words that once peppered the language of baby boomers and their parents to discover why they seem to be slipping from common use. Why is it that people don't say 'cheerio' any more, and, come to think of it, why did they in the first place? Do people still tinker with jalopies? And whatever happened to Tom, Dick and Harry, not to mention all those other folk who provided us with such excellent conversational shorthand? Filled with entertaining vignettes and intriguing etymology, Ruth has created an imaginary hospice that offers a caring refuge for pre-loved words that are in imminent danger of being dismissed as 'obs' (for'obsolete') or 'arch' (for 'archaic') in English dictionaries.Written with Ruth Wajnryb's characteristic intelligence, sly wit and élan, Cheerio Tom, Dick and Harry examines the way in which our everyday language reflects and gives expression to the enormous changes that have taken place in our physical and social landscape over the last fifty years or so.
The Maeve Binchy Writers' Club
By Maeve Binchy
Fascinating and informative - advice to inspire budding writers as well as entertaining Maeve Binchy fans the world over.'The most important thing to realise is that everyone is capable of telling a story. It doesn't matter where we were born or how we grew up' Maeve BinchyTHE MAEVE BINCHY WRITERS' CLUB gives a unique insight into how a No. 1 bestselling author writes. Inspired by a course run by the National College of Ireland, it comprises twenty letters from Maeve offering advice, tips and her own wonderfully witty take on the life of a writer, in addition to contributions from top writers, publishers and editors.Whether you want to write a saga or a thriller, comedy or journalism, or write for the radio or stage, the book also gives advice on the best way to get started, and what editors, publishers and agents are looking for.
Mouse or Rat?
By Umberto Eco
From the world-famous author of THE NAME OF THE ROSE, an illuminating and humorous study on the pleasures and pitfalls of translation.'Translation is always a shift, not between two languages but between two cultures. A translator must take into account rules that are not strictly linguistic but, broadly speaking, cultural.'Umberto Eco is of the world's most brilliant and entertaining writers on literature and language. In this accessible and dazzling study, he turns his eye on the subject of translations and the problems the differences between cultures can cause. The book is full of little gems about mistranslations and misunderstandings.For example when you put 'Studies in the logic of Charles Sanders Peirce' through an internet translation machine, it becomes 'Studies in the logic of the Charles of sandpaper grinding machines Peirce'. In Italian 'ratto' has no connotation of 'contemptible person' but denotes speed ('you dirty rat' could take on a whole new meaning!)What could be a weighty subject is never dull, fired by Eco's immense wit and erudition, providing an entertaining read that illuminates the process of negotiation that all translators must make.