Friday, April 23, 2010

Ever Wondered Why You Say It?

I am such a word geek. So I jumped at the chance to review this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers on the origins of many words and phrases.

Webb Garrison
Thomas Nelson Publishers
ISBN: 1595552995

ABOUT THE BOOK (from the publisher):
Are you at the end of your rope? Wouldn’t it be nice if someone would throw you an olive branch at the eleventh hour instead of passing the buck?

Why You Say It explores the history of these and over six hundred other common and uncommon phrases in an intriguing and entertaining way. Have you ever wondered what rhubarb and angry mobs have in common, why we call them red-letter days, or what loaded for bear actually means? With delightful insight into how our language grows and changes, Why You Say It is intellectually stimulating and easy to read.

While it's unlikely that one would sit down and read this book from cover to cover, it is a useful and fun resource explaining where some of our common words and phrases originated. I was already familiar with some of them, such as the handwriting on the wall (from the book of Daniel), nit-picker (from the old days of carefully picking through one's hair to pull out nits, or lice), and bite the bullet (from Civil War days when an injured soldier was given a bullet to bite while they amputated an injured leg with no anesthesia). Others were new to me, and a couple were even eye-openers! Words and phrases are grouped into chapters by their common denominator or origin, such as entertainment, sports, transportation, etc. An index in the back enables the reader to quickly locate a specific word/phrase.

Why You Say It can be purchased from the publisher or from Amazon.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson through BookSneeze, their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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Unknown said...

Me too! I am always wondering about the expressions we use. Sound like a good book!


sara said...

I think it is so fun to find out how things started....some times it is very surprising!

Unknown said...

Seems like a really neat book!