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Publisher's Summary

The Elements of Style has long been a valued and beloved resource for all writers. Hailed for its directness and clever insight, this unorthodox textbook was born from a professor's love for the written word and perfected years later by one of his students: famed author E. B. White. Ever since its first publication in 1959, writers have turned to this book for its wise and accessible advice.
©1995 William Strunk (P)2007 Recorded Books

What the critics say

"The work remains a nonpareil: direct, correct, and delightful." ( The New Yorker)

What listeners say about The Elements of Style (Recorded Books Edition)

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The Famous Little Book

No fluff, clear and actionable recommendations and advice with enough examples.

Based on your taste you may have a quick checklist to finish your work.

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • T. C. Pile
  • 2008-12-07

Required Reading

If you think you know anything about the English language, you had better know this book backward and forward. It's every bit as wise and relevant today as it has ever been. I was somewhat curious as to whether this would come off as an audio book, because in my memory it was so intricately tied to the written word. Listening just broadened my respect for Strunk and White. This book is about language, by and for those who love and value it, in whatever form it takes.

121 people found this helpful

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  • James
  • 2018-02-19

A Defense of McCourt's Drunken Performance

Any additional comments?

Yes, Frank McCourt sounds like a drunk old Irishman in this performance. But he sounds like a SMART drunk old Irishman who intimately understands Strunk and White's book. He makes many funny choices of emphasis, taking his cue from White's description of Strunk's quasi-scolding lecture manner. He vividly interprets the character and charm of the book, and the valuable information is carefully, if whimsically, planted in the listener's brain. Also, when additional words must be added to the text because of visual clues on the page, McCourt chooses (if these were his choices) efficient and clear ways of doing so. This audiobook is a charmer, in my opinion.

72 people found this helpful

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  • Michael Cavacini
  • 2012-04-23

Essential For Writers

This book is packed with useful information for writers, and many of the points are delivered in a humorous way, which makes for an entertaining listen.

Frank McCourt did a fine job with the narration. However, some may be turned off by his accent.

Overall, this was a great audiobook that I plan on listening to again. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in writing. You should also check out "On Writing" by Stephen King; it's an excellent book.

38 people found this helpful

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  • Jonathan
  • 2014-03-01

The Best Book for the Editing Proceedure...

I collected up a handfull of publications on writing to explore between drafts of my own book. Several deal with the craft of writing, developing characters, plot devices, and so on. however, none were as effective as this one with the simple tho difficult task of Editing my book.
While many of the options dealt with the process of creating the story, the characters, and the plot, most of them fell down when it came to simple and direct assertive guidelines to help cut out the clutter of a manuscript already essentially developed.
This book was refreshingly direct, tho a bit dense for any single reading, when it came to simple statements of 'do This and Not That'...
I may suggest a hard copy that can be flipped between and refferred to on your desk as you work, but the book itsself is perhaps the single most usefully important book for any aspiring writer to reference!
It was highly reccomended and I have been nothing but pleased with the end results!

34 people found this helpful

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  • Sfe
  • 2010-04-26

Great Content - Horrible Narration

The content is great and I truly wish I could listen to it. After 107 audio books, I have heard a reasonable share of mediocre narrations, but this mouth-breather is untenable. I have been able to listen to other books that listeners have given bad reviews to the narrator, but this recording is horrible.

32 people found this helpful

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  • Hasmi
  • 2010-04-30

Fabulous and the only way to truly understand

Frank McCourt is fantastic as a narrator. I never understood all the concepts in this book until I heard it as an audio book. It made a great difference to my writing and critical thinking about grammar. I've listened to it twice and listen anytime I need a refresher.

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  • Nick
  • 2011-09-08

Worst Narration I've Ever Heard

I bought this book back in college and relied on it constantly. When I saw the audio-book was available I figured I'd give it a shot, for nostalgia if nothing else. The content was as good as I remembered but the experience was ruined by the narration. The only thing I can liken the sound to is a 90 year-old, drunk Irishman who nearly spits his dentures out with each sentence. Seriously. Buy it (if you want to waste a credit), you'll see what I mean. Whoever hired this guy needs a performance review ASAP.

27 people found this helpful

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  • Nina Angela McKissock
  • 2016-02-18

My ADD is conquered!

I'm the classic "ants in the pants" kinda student. I love to be read to, and hunger for all things explained and spoken. Audible has rescued me from my frustration and the feeling of being a misfit for being able to sit still still while "reading."

26 people found this helpful

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  • Paul Richard
  • 2018-04-16

Can't get past the narrator.

Based on subject, buying this book in audio form was a stretch from the beginning. Shame on me for not checking the audio sample first, but I deleted the book after less than a minute due to the narrator. I'll just dust off my print copy instead. I hope your experience is better.

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  • Caroline
  • 2016-10-12

I liked the narrator

Is there anything you would change about this book?

I might have the edit a little cleaner (though, I spend a lot of time editing narration myself, so, this is a nit pick). It's a dry subject, treated with dry wit by the authors and delivered in a voice that reminded me of my grandfather, a retired judge. If anything, I'd have a higher quality audio file.

Did The Elements of Style (Recorded Books Edition) inspire you to do anything?

Mostly, so far, it's inspired me to be incredibly self conscious of what I've written here. :)

Any additional comments?

I read reviews that complained bout McCourt's narration. I heard some spots where breaths were poorly edited, but this is not McCourt's fault. I liked his narration. The way he announced each section title reminded me of my grandfather, I could see the look on his face and his finger in the air. It brought back a lot of a great memories, and was comfortable for me. I thought he did a great job at conveying William Strunk's dry wit.

11 people found this helpful