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A Word in Your Shell-Like By Nigel Rees

A Word in Your Shell-Like
by Nigel Rees

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A complete guide to phrases in everyday life

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A Word in Your Shell-Like Summary

A Word in Your Shell-Like: 6,000 curious and everyday phrases explained by Nigel Rees

A complete guide to phrases in everyday life

A Word in your Shell-Like will be the ideal replacement or complement to that tatty old copy of Brewer's most of us have about the house: a modern, entertaining guide to the wonderful world of phrases, familiar and unfamiliar, a landmark publication by one of the key world authorities in English language reference. It is an entirely phrase-based book, exploring well-known phrases - catchphrases, slogans, idioms, cliches, nicknames, titles of books and films, and quotations. The articles will contain discussion of meaning, origin and usage. Sample entries include:

'but, miss - you're beautiful without your glasses'
'I must go down to the seas again'
'small, but perfectly formed'
'sold down the river'
`abhors a vacuum'
`all dressed up and nowhere to go'
`and when did you last see your father?'
`Anglo-Saxon attitudes'
`another meal the Germans won't have'
`What did you do in the Great War, Daddy?'
`by Grand Central Station I sat down and wept'
`Burlington Bertie'

Few other word reference books are likely to increase your store of knowledge with such fun: find out of whom it was said: 'he couldn't chew gum and fart at the same time', who the `catcher in the rye' was, and what it means to be `caught between wind and water'.

in your shell?like (ear). Phrase used when asking to have a 'quiet word' with someone: '(Let me have a word) in your ear' is all it means, but it makes gentle fun of a poetic simile. Thomas Hood's Bianca's Dream (1827) has: 'Her small and shell-like ear'. The Complete Naff Guide (1983) has 'a word in your shell-like ear' among 'naff things schoolmasters say'.

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A Word in Your Shell-Like Reviews

`a treasury of stimulating excursions and digressions in the English Language'

Ian Mayes, The Guardian, 2nd Oct. `04

`There's a lot of fascinating material here and the larger part of the book is unexceptionable, with much interesting information.'

Michael Quinion, World Wide Words, 2nd Oct. `04

About Nigel Rees

Nigel Rees is regarded as one of the world authorities on English usage and is the author of over 50 reference books. His Radio 4 show, Quote... Unquote is one of the longest running quiz shows in the world (since 1974) and his newsletter has a wide and influential circulation.

Additional information

A Word in Your Shell-Like: 6,000 curious and everyday phrases explained by Nigel Rees
Nigel Rees
Used - Very Good
HarperCollins Publishers
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.