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About the blogger:
Debra Hamel is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.


Books by Debra Hamel:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


paperback | Kindle | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


paperback | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)





Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



Book Notices | Grammar for a Full Life by Lawrence Weinstein

Lawrence Weinstein, Grammar for a Full Life

  Amazon  

I didn't expect to like this book. Intrigued by the title, I figured I'd read a few pages to satisfy my curiosity and then delete it from my Kindle. Hippie treacle, I figured. But I was wrong.

Grammar for a Full Life is a collection of some 30 essays, a pleasing mix of grammar and philosophy, humane and thoughtful musings on the power of words and syntax and punctuation to enhance the human spirit. The essays are divided into thematic sections that relate to human needs—agency, belonging, freedom, and so on. One of my favorites of the bunch considers ellipses—both the punctuation mark and, more generally, elided words—and their connection to, well, connecting, because "a good deal goes without saying" in our most intimate relationships: "It is, to a large extent, the ellipsis which accounts for the joyful, bonding power inherent in the telling of a good joke." The same brief essay considers the poem "This Is Just to Say" by William Carlos Williams, in which the narrator confesses to eating plums that his reader was saving for breakfast. It's a love poem, Weinstein argues: "Between Williams's mischievous lines, I hear him saying, 'I feel so certain of our staying power as a couple that I have no fear even of reminding you of what a problematic choice of spouse you made.'"

Needless to say, I did not delete this book from my Kindle after a few pages. In fact, I had downloaded it for free as part of a complimentary trial subscription to Kindle Unlimited, and that subscription expired while I was in the middle of reading it. So I bought the book, and I bought it in hard copy—something I simply don't do these days unless a book is a fat dictionary or it's not in English. But this book is such a joy that I wanted to have it on hand for future thumbings-through. 

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