Reviews of Stylized

Stylized at

Interviews about Stylized

Wall Street Journal op-ed

Mark Garvey

Review from Library Journal, 10/1/09, available here.

Garvey, Mark. Stylized: A Slightly Obsessive History of Strunk & White's The Elements of Style. Touchstone: S. & S. Oct. 2009. c.224p. illus. bibliog. ISBN 978-1-4165-9092-7. $22.99. LANG

Fifty years after the publication of William Strunk and E.B. White's enduring collaboration, The Elements of Style, editor and writer Garvey (Waiting for Mary: America in Search of a Miracle) provides a detailed tribute. Fittingly, he lets Strunk, White, and other major contributors to the book help tell the story. He presents their correspondence with each other and with their readers and offers contemporary reflections on the writers' guide. Readers can come to know these individuals and get a glimpse at contract negotiations, the revision process, and sweeping changes in 20th-century academia. Garvey raises his own voice among the others to weave biographical sketches, covering, e.g., how White achieved fame as a New Yorker magazine columnist. In addition, lengthy interview quotations allow writers such as Nicholson Baker and Frank McCourt to share their memories of the book and what caused it to remain popular. Garvey also quotes scholarly articles that oppose aspects of The Elements. VERDICT This original, thoroughly researched work is recommended both for academics and for nonstudents who love writing.
Marianne Orme, Des Plaines P.L., IL

Return to Stylized home page.