Bryson's Dictionary of Troublesome Words - Bill Bryson I read this book two times in about six months, so I think I'm done with the cover to cover work. I have it marked and highlighted and handy for reference. Along with discussions of spelling and usage, Bryson includes many examples of incorrect usage from well-known publications and authors (including his very august self). The examples let you see what it looks like when it's done wrong, and you may recognize your own errors in those of other people. It's also nice to know that even the professionals make mistakes and get away with it. Best of all, Bryson reminds us that English is a blissfully messy and uncooperative language. He encourages writers to ignore convention and flout the rules if they choose, provided they know what those rules are prior to breaking them. (If you're going to screw up, be sure it's intentional.) Not even the experts can agree all of the time on what is right, so Bill Bryson humbly offers us this book as "a compilation of suggestions, observations, and even treasured prejudices." It's worth having on hand if you're a word geek with a lousy memory like me. I refer to it frequently.