Norris更以狄更斯等名家經典著作、《辛普森家庭》等影集對白、暢銷小說如《控制》為例，解釋各類文法使用時機。書中並加入作者在學習英文遇到或曾探究的有趣問題，諸如：白鯨記原文書名Moby-Dick中間那個連字號 (-)到底是誰加上去的？為什麼船跟國家的主詞，是陰性而不是陽性？還有在許多場合禁止、但能淋漓盡致表達情緒的F字二三事… 本書絕非一般的文法書，而是讓你重新發現英文美好的有趣書籍。(文/ 銀背鋼絲絨)
Mary Norris has spent more than three decades in The New Yorker''s copy department, maintaining its celebrated high standards. Now she brings her vast experience, good cheer, and finely sharpened pencils to help the rest of us in a boisterous language book as full of life as it is of practical advice.
Between You & Me features Norris''s laugh-out-loud descriptions of some of the most common and vexing problems in spelling, punctuation, and usage--comma faults, danglers, "who" vs. "whom," "that" vs. "which," compound words, gender-neutral language--and her clear explanations of how to handle them. Down-to-earth and always open-minded, she draws on examples from Charles Dickens, Emily Dickinson, Henry James, and the Lord''s Prayer, as well as from The Honeymooners, The Simpsons, David Foster Wallace, and Gillian Flynn. She takes us to see a copy of Noah Webster''s groundbreaking Blue-Back Speller, on a quest to find out who put the hyphen in Moby-Dick, on a pilgrimage to the world''s only pencil-sharpener museum, and inside the hallowed halls of The New Yorker and her work with such celebrated writers as Pauline Kael, Philip Roth, and George Saunders.
Readers--and writers--will find in Norris neither a scold nor a softie but a wise and witty new friend in love with language and alive to the glories of its use in America, even in the age of autocorrect and spell-check. As Norris writes, "The dictionary is a wonderful thing, but you can''t let it push you around."