Monday, April 19, 2010

Why You Say It: The Fascinating Stories Behind over 600 Everyday Words and Phrases, A Review

Why You Say It looked interesting to me because of my passing interest in etymology.  The book, written by Webb Garrison, examines the history behind common words and phrases that the average English speaking person encounters nearly every day.

I'm not sure really how to rate this book.  At times it was interesting; however, more often than not, I was eager to skip ahead.  Each word or phrase reads like a Wikipedia article: brief, hitting the important things, and slightly wordy.

Some words and phrases were very interesting, having truly fascinating history.  Others were logical.  Many were surprising.

Garrison aims well, but never really hits the mark.  Some words I wanted to know more about, and others seemed to be too full of boring history.  I realize that Garrison has no impact on the etymology of words, but I feel like this book could have easily been shorter.

Overall, Why You Say It was an interesting enough read, but it leaves no lasting impression on me.  I could spout out a few new nuggets of wisdom, but nothing lasting.  But, if you have more than a passing interest in word origins, I recommend the book for you.

This book was provided to me for for free by and Thomas Nelson Books, in exchange for an honest review.

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