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Wretched Writing: A Compendium of Crimes Against the English Language Paperback – Aug 6 2013

2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: TarcherPerigee (Aug. 6 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039915924X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399159244
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.5 x 21 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 200 g
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #354,968 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Ross Petras and Kathryn Petras are a brother-and-sister writing team, and the authors of the bestselling Stupidest series—which includes the #1 bestselling page-a-day calendar The 365 Stupidest Things Ever Said (now in its nineteenth year—with more than 4.5 million copies sold)—along with other books.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
In "Wretched Writing," the brother and sister team of Petrases present a collection of truly abominable passages taken from a variety of sources and published between the 19th century and the present. The authors arrange the book by literary crime (excessive colourful language, confusing metaphors etc) and provide plenty of examples of each along with their own commentary. They offer a litany of pathetic sex scenes, awful titles and even embarrassing attempts at dialect. Successful authors like Danielle Steel and Michael Crichton emerge among the offenders so at least readers gain assurance that even the famous make mistakes.

Unfortunately, the Petrases butcher a fabulous opportunity here. Only about half the book comprises extracts from published writings, which, alone, provide mediocre amusement. The other half of the text constitutes the authors' own wretched writing: tedious, puerile and tiresome musings on what makes their examples cringe-worthy. Ultimately good for a few chuckles but severely lacking insight and intelligence.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9bbe8e40) out of 5 stars 24 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc239d8) out of 5 stars very funny but not what I was expecting Nov. 29 2013
By Craig - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
while most of the material covered in this book is very funny I was VERY surprised at how many entries are more then a little "risqué". If I wasn't expecting it some of the entries might be considered offensive and of a very adult nature. Aside from though, a very funny book and absolutely worth a look.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc23c24) out of 5 stars Awfully Bad Feb. 14 2014
By J. E. Smith - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
"Wretched Writing" is wretchedly written.
The examples of rotten prose are amusing, but the authors can't seem to resist wildly gilding the lilies and overcooking the satiric trimmings of hopelessly mixed metaphors, dangerously dangling participles and illiterate alliterations.
In short, they talk too much, much as I did just now.
Worse, these prolix authors commit many of the same literary boo-boos they criticize, also like I'm doing here.
In the nonexistent words of the justly scorned Edward Bulwer-Litton, "This book stinks intelligently."
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc23e64) out of 5 stars Waste of paper, money and time April 12 2014
By David Hancocks - Published on
Format: Paperback
A fabulous opportunity is squandered here. About half of this book comprises extracts from published writings. The other half of the text is provided by the Petrases. The collection of samples is generally mediocre, and disturbingly uneven. The awfulness of their own wretched writing, however, is astonishingly consistent: tedious, dull, boring, flatulent, and flat-eyed. On almost every page they dissect examples of what constitutes "wretched writing," then unerringly proceed to put most of them into practice.
The Petrases attempts at humor are especially aggravating: coy, puerile and tiresome may be the kindest adjectives.
In truth, I was warned: the blurb for the book closes with the warning, "try not to cringe too much." I just did not anticipate this was referring to the editors' contribution.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b9fe0fc) out of 5 stars Very funny April 5 2014
By Erin Hall - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very funny and somewhat humbling...I found myself thinking, "I write like that." The style of criticism is very sarcastic--very enjoyable.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc23f78) out of 5 stars Mildly entertaining Nov. 14 2013
By bibliophile - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Interesting, but not nearly as funny as the advertising promised. It's a compendium of "the good, the bad, and the ugly."