Title: The Little Red Writing Book Deluxe Edition
Note: the deluxe edition reviewed here includes The Little Red Writing Book and The Little Gold Grammar Book. See pictures below.
Author: Brandon Royal
Genre: Nonfiction – Writing
Number of Pages: 354 (161 in Writing and 228 in Grammar)
The Little Red Writing Book and The Little Gold Grammar Book give simple principles for better writing. They examine rules of structure, grammar, style, and usage.
Unfortunately, these books fell far short of my expectations.
Both books are equally poor. The examples are clumsy and hard to understand. I had to reread the sentences to understand what they were saying. Sometimes there are no examples at all.
Both books are supposed to give a number of simple rules to make writing easier. Instead, they make it more confusing. The rules are hard to remember, and the explanations lack detail.
On the other hand, some of the instruction is too basic. In a list of commonly misused words, the author tells us how to pronounce the words “choose,” “choosing,” and “chose.” This is a book geared toward working professionals, not preschoolers.
Even in instruction books, I prefer a dose of good humor in the writing. It makes the book much more enjoyable and is a spoonful of sugar to make the medicine go down. These books are dry, however, and completely devoid of a single ounce of humor.
I gave this book two stars because it was sometimes a little helpful to me. There are better books out there, though. In two or three instances, Royal quotes The Elements of Style. That book is much better and I recommend reading it instead.
What I recommend instead:
What are your favorite writing and/or grammar books?