If you are looking for a quick reference book to help you with spelling, grammar, punctuation, and more, you might want to look into Jan Straus’ The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation.
I can always learn more when it comes to writing especially after being out of school for a few decades. I need a refresher on the do’s and don’ts of grammar. I think I found a good source in Straus’ Blue Book.
She discusses nouns, verbs, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, punctuation, numbers, and basic grammar rules such as capitalization. These are not written in a boring manner. In fact, these are formatted on the pages in an easy to read manner and attractive to the eye.
What really makes this a great book to use as a reference? It is laid out easy, written in an easy to read way, and has quizzes in the back to help you test your knowledge. This means it is not just great for writers, but for students, GED students, homeschooling students, and the office. You can’t go wrong with this book.
The only thing you have to beware is that this book is not the complete book to have. If you are needing to write in a certain style (for example, Chicago Manual of Style), you need to get that book as a reference as the rules in the Blue Book might not agree with other styles. This is a book for basic writing only. There are exceptions to rules depending on what you are writing for. Be aware of that.
Some reviewers have commented on errors in the book. I agree with some of them though the edition I have does not have all of them. Some of the ‘mistakes’ are actually disagreements among the educational institutes as to what is acceptable in regard to grammar. Believe it or not, there are many instances in grammar where educators and writers do not agree. This book does not differentiate between those, so some of the ‘rules’ I would say are incorrect but they follow the line of thinking that many grammar camps agree with.
Despite what you might think, all grammar rules are not written in blood. If you get this book, get others. You should always have many reference books on hand and use them all. In the end, you need to write what your boss or teacher wants.
Note: This book was purchased by me with my own funds.