A panda walked into a cafe. He ordered a sandwich, ate it, then pulled out a gun and shot the waiter. ‘Why?’ groaned the injured man. The panda shrugged, tossed him a badly punctuated wildlife manual and walked out. And sure enough, when the waiter consulted the book, he found an explanation. ‘Panda,’ read the entry for his assailant. ‘Large black and white mammal native to China. Eats, shoots and leaves.’
We see signs in shops every day for ‘Banana’s’ and even ‘Gateaux’s’. Competition rules remind us: ‘The judges decision is final.’ Now, many punctuation guides already exist explaining the principles of the apostrophe; the comma; the semi-colon. But people who can’t punctuate don’t read those books! Of course they don’t! They laugh at books like those!
Eats, Shoots and Leaves adopts a more militant approach and attempts to recruit an army of punctuation vigilantes: send letters back with the punctuation corrected; do not accept sloppy emails; climb ladders at dead of night with a pot of paint to remove the redundant apostrophe in ‘Video’s sold here.’
Sticklers unite! You have nothing to lose but your sense of proportion.
John Walsh, The Independent
Eats, Shoots and Leaves makes the history of punctuation a subject at once urgent, sexy and hilarious…
Nigel Williams, The Observer Review
This is more than a witty, elegant and passionate book that should be on every writer’s shelf. Well. Done. Lynne!!!!
John Humphrys, Sunday Times
‘Lynne Truss deserves to be piled high with honours’.
Sarah Vine, The Times
Truss is one of life’s head girls. She’s also jolly good fun, or at least her book is.
Terry Eagleton, Irish Times
A wonderful little treatise on the uses and misuses of punctuation. Witty and entertaining as well as informative.
William Hartston, Daily Express
Lovers of good English have thought of ourselves as isolated outposts…Lynne Truss has emerged as our champion.
Mary Kenny, Irish Independent
‘Lynne Truss has written a funny and apposite book’.
Richard Madeley, Richard & Judy
‘She’s a soul sister. She’s one of us.’