Lewis Cunningham's Reviews > Building Great Sentences: How to Write the Kinds of Sentences You Love to Read

Building Great Sentences by Brooks Landon
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's review
May 05, 2013

really liked it
Recommended for: writers

This book is basically the print version of the video course available from The Great Courses. I ran into the great courses a couple of years ago when the had a pretty nice sale going on. This course was the very first that I bought. I have bought a couple more since. The course on black holes is pretty good.

Anyway, Brooks Landon, the author/instructor, comes across at first as fairly pompous. On the video, I had to get to the third or fourth video before I quit being distracted by his pomposity. The book follows in the same vein. The thing is, I don't think that in a regular conversation, he would be that way. As you get going, you start to get an idea of his humor. I'm not sure how to describe it. Literary humor? High brow? Whatever. After a while he kind of grows on you.

The book/course is about exactly what the title says it is. Building great sentences. Prof. Landon takes you through the concepts that make for good reading (at the most basic level of the sentence) and eventually gets to how you write a good sentence.

This book is valuable to no one but the writer. While I found it worthwhile, I am unable to think of anyone, who doesn't occasionally sit at a keyboard and bleed, who would find it at all interesting. I know a lot of writer's who would be bored by it. However, if you are at all interested, this is the book.

You can think of a book as being made up of it's components. Chapters, scenes, pages, sentences and, finally, words. Sentences are the building blocks. Words by themselves do not tell a story. You need to combine them into sentences before they have any value. Words are like the quarks in quantum theory.

So long story short, I recommend this to anyone who likes words and likes making sentences. If you don't learn anything, I would be surprised. But even if you don't learn anything, some interesting topics are covered.


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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
May 5, 2013 – Shelved

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