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A Way With Words Part III: Grammar for Adults | [Michael D.C. Drout]

A Way With Words Part III: Grammar for Adults

Since others judge you by the way you speak, the intricacies of grammar, in fact, should not be relegated to the realm of fussy "guardians of the language," but are rather essential clues all can employ to communicate more exactly. In such a light, this course forms an invaluable guide for everyone from all fields of interest.
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Publisher's Summary

Who eats shoots and leaves? A panda? Or a gunman at a restaurant? The answer to this all depends on - you guessed it - grammar. In the third part of his extraordinary Way with Words series, Professor Drout continues to explore humanity's intimate association with language, here delving into the finer points of English grammar. Since others judge you by the way you speak, the intricacies of grammar, in fact, should not be relegated to the realm of fussy "guardians of the language," but are rather essential clues all can employ to communicate more exactly. In such a light, this course forms an invaluable guide for everyone from all fields of interest.

©2008 Michael D.C. Drout; (P)2008 Recorded Books

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  •  
    Herbal 23/12/2012
    Herbal 23/12/2012 Listener Since 2007

    jaguru

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    3
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    Overall
    "A clear and enjoyable guide to English grammar"

    I needed to ensure that I knew when to use "its" or "it's", "who" or "whom", "and I" or "and me", and avoid other easily made mistakes in the English language. Michael Drout not only provides the answers but gives tips on how to remember them, backing up his information with interesting and often entertaining stories about the history of English and how we came to have the words and usage that we have today.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    joheward worthing, west sussex United Kingdom 03/08/2014
    joheward worthing, west sussex United Kingdom 03/08/2014 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    6
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    "A Way With Words Part III"
    What didn’t you like about the narrator’s performance?

    The author narrates, which is unfortunate, as, for my British ears, both his American accent, and humour, I found jarring.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I had to listen to the author in small sittings.


    Any additional comments?

    The content is excellent, so if you are happy with the narration, then you will enjoy the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-2 of 2 results
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  • Johanna
    Riverdale, NY, United States
    13/11/10
    Overall
    "GREAT!!!! I learned and was entertained."

    This audio book helped me understand grammar from a different perspective. Professor Drout is probably one of the few people in the world who can explain grammar from a historical point and BE FUNNY!!!
    This audio book has a website companion where you read his lectures and take an exam. I learned and was entertained. I recommend this book for not only non native English speakers like myself, but to anyone who wants to get grammar once and for all.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Debbie
    Columbia, MO, United States
    21/05/11
    Overall
    "Cure for Grammar Anxiety"

    This audio course is for anyone who has ever suffered from grammar anxiety. Prof. Drout gives special dispensation to place prepositions at the end of sentences, to use split infinitives, and conjunctions at the beginning of sentences. He also gives you a solid defense against those grammar sticklers that make others fret over syntax: ???keep your imported Latin grammar rules to yourself!???

    Thanks to Prof. Drout I now understand how to correctly use ???I??? and ???me,??? ???that??? and ???which,??? ???who??? and ???whom.??? With generous references to the history of our exquisite language and a delightful sense of humor, Prof. Drout makes all the grammar worries go away. You???ll understand why parts of our language are strange and confusing, and gain a new appreciation for those trying to learn English as a second language.

    Prof. Drout reads excerpts from Beowulf and Chaucer, so you???ll hear the musical roots of our wonderful language. He explains that the evolution of English is more about conquerors, and less about scholarly progression. He discusses past scholars who have declared Latin the perfect language and, therefore, tried to force English to conform to Latin grammar. This has resulted is some of the most frustrating aspects of English.

    He explains that English grammar is an art, not a science. For this reason, he rails against grammar checkers, ???let those Seattle trolls keep their green squiggly lines to themselves.???

    I highly recommend this course. You???ll actually understand what a participle is and why it shouldn???t dangle. You???ll comprehend gerunds, infinitives, and modals. Not only will you gain a solid command of English, but it happens in just 7 hours; that???s amazing!

    14 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Jeremy
    Yuen Long, Hong Kong
    09/02/09
    Overall
    "Excellent Course"

    This course contains an enjoyable and interesting series of lectures on English grammer. It is narrated by its author, Professor Michael Drout, who explains the history of English grammer; and its rules, conventions and contradictions in a thoroughly humouress, light-hearted and logical manner. I would recommend this course to anyone seeking to improve their use and knowledge of English grammer, whether or not you may be a native English speaker or learning English as a second language.

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • Emily
    Colorado Springs, CO, United States
    01/10/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "As interesting as Grammar can possibly be"

    I was worried that this one might be dull but have been pleasantly surprised. Only Professor Drout could make Grammar this interesting.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Theresa
    Fayetteville, GA, USA
    24/03/09
    Overall
    "A Way With Words Part III"

    I never thought anyone could be entertaining and teach grammar at the same time! I will be reading everything else available from Michael Drout. If you need to know grammar and think you'll hate, it this book is for you.

    11 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Filipe
    Belo Horizonte - MGBrazil
    13/12/09
    Overall
    "I used to hate grammar, but I love it now!"

    I found this book at audible main page and the image of the red panda and Grammar together made me curious... I checked just by curiosity because I never found grammar interesting... in fact I used to hate grammar. But it enjoyed so much the preview that I bought and guess what? I enjoyed so much that I can say I love grammar now! This book is a lot of fun to learn... You will learn as much as you laugh! But this is not only about fun! Michael D. C. Drout (1968- ) is the Prentice Associate Professor of English at Wheaton College and an author and editor specializing in Anglo-Saxon and medieval literature, science fiction and fantasy, especially the works of J. R. R. Tolkien and Ursula K. LeGuin. Drout holds a Ph.D. in English from Loyola University Chicago (May 1997), an M.A. in English from the University of Missouri (May 1993), and an M.A. in Communication from Stanford University (May 1991). Want to know more? Please buy this book and you will never regret. I'm listening for the 4th time !

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Robert
    Yamhill, OR, United States
    03/10/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I have always given Drout high marks."

    I have always given top ratings to Michael D.C. Drout's entries in the Modern Scholar series. Not this one.

    Before reading it, I wondered exactly how much grammar could be packed into 8 hours of lecture. The answer is more than I expected and less. Drout includes a lot of history of the English language in a number of the early chapters. He defines many English constructs that do not need defining or clarification and glosses over parts of speech that could have received more attention. It is obvious that he took much of the content of these lectures from other lectures on other subjects. Having read a fair amount of Drout, I have found that he does this a lot. It's almost like filler that he could have taken the time and space to use more prudently. Drout is on an ego trip and totally taken up by himself in these lectures.

    The botom line is that I would not recommend this book. If you are interested in English grammar, get Mignon Fogarty's Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing. It is fun and a masterpiece in writing. Or, if you are a podcast kind of person, subscribe to Grammar Girl's: Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing on iTunes. It doesn't get any better than this. I'd give Grammar Girl 10 stars.

    9 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • RUDY
    28/05/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not to the Point"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Not sure


    What was most disappointing about Michael D.C. Drout’s story?

    He has a remarkable education and expertise but the book is way too informal rather than informative.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by the narrator?

    Perhaps.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    He expresses his point of view in a very clear way in the last chapter.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Chi-Hung
    Riverside, CA, USA
    17/03/10
    Overall
    "Go red panda!"

    As great a lecturer as Professor Drout is, even with his humour and considerable talent, an 8 hour lecture on grammar seems to be too much of a feat. No fault on the lecturer's part, it's the subject.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Gerald
    Laredo, TX, United States
    11/10/11
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Historical rather than practical ....."

    This set of lecturers discusses the progression of English grammar from an historical prospective. One can hear excerpts of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales and Beowulf (for example) read in their original medieval form of prose along with discussions of their influence on modern English language. While some audiences may find this information interesting, it offers very little practical help for those wanting to improve grammar of the language spoken today. In short, the lectures are geared to people interested in academic discourse on the history of grammar.

    There are a few of practical points, but not many. The lectures help current speakers to improve their speech in the same way a history of filaments or a biography of Thomas Edison would help someone needing to know how to change a halogen light bulb.

    I’ve purchased at least 50 books from Audible so far, and this one by far has been the most painful to listen to. It’s dry and repetitive, and not because the subject is grammar. The problem is the lecturer and his presentation.

    8 of 13 people found this review helpful
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