Author(s): Nigel Fountain
With all the bells and whistles, this intriguing guide to all those everyday phrases really is the bees knees for anyone with a love of the English language. Let's cut to the chase: cliches are a familiar part of the English language, but to be honest, many have been so over-used that they have become trite, meaningless and rather irritating. With this informative and humorous book, you are in a safe pair of hands as you learn about the origins and meanings of some of the most hackneyed phrases still used today. Avoid Them Like the Plague will keep you up to speed with cliches in their many forms - once useful but now overworked catchphrases ('move the goal posts'), worn-out sayings ('all hands on deck'), pointless phrases used to conceal a weak argument ('to be perfectly honest'), technical terms used out of context ('collateral damage') and many others. This fun and witty book aims to expose the self-importance or laziness that frequently lie behind the worst examples of these phrases and sheds light on why it's best to avoid them. Employing a combination of erudition, humour and occasional derision, Avoid Them Like the Plague thinks outside the box and really is the best thing since sliced bread for anyone who values good English and clear communication.
-Guides the reader through the origins, histories and meanings of cliches in every form.- --The Oldie
Nigel Fountain is a writer, broadcaster and journalist who has written for many publications, including The Guardian, The Observer, The Sunday Times, The New Statesman, The Oldie, the London Evening Standard, the New York Soho Weekly News, History Today, New Society, Oz magazine and Time Out. His documentary work for Radio 4 and BBC2 has ranged from style magazines and the history of thrillers to dance halls and the events of 1968. He was a commissioning obituaries editor on The Guardian for many years, and co-editor of City Limits magazine. His books include: Days Like These (a novel); two volumes from the 'Voices From the Twentieth Century' series, Women at War and The Battle of Britain and the Blitz; Underground: The London Alternative Press 1966-74; Lost Empires: The Phenomenon of Theatres Past, Present And Future; and the award-winning WWII: The People's Story. He read Politics at York University.