The Girl's Like Spaghetti: Why, You Can't Manage Without Apostrophes!

Overview

Just as the use of commas was hilariously demystified in Eats, Shoots & Leaves: Why, Commas Really Do Make a Difference!, now Lynne Truss and Bonnie Timmons put their talents together to do the same for apostrophes. Everyone needs to know where to put an apostrophe to make a word plural or possessive (Are those sticky things your brother's or your brothers?) and leaving one out of a contraction can give someone the completely wrong impression (Were here to help you).

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Overview

Just as the use of commas was hilariously demystified in Eats, Shoots & Leaves: Why, Commas Really Do Make a Difference!, now Lynne Truss and Bonnie Timmons put their talents together to do the same for apostrophes. Everyone needs to know where to put an apostrophe to make a word plural or possessive (Are those sticky things your brother's or your brothers?) and leaving one out of a contraction can give someone the completely wrong impression (Were here to help you).

Full of silly scenes that show how apostrophes make a difference, too, this is another picture book that will elicit bales of laughter and better punctuation from all who read it.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
In her adult bestseller Eats, Shoots & Leaves: Why, Commas Really Do Make a Difference!, Lynne Truss added a metaphorical exclamation point to the importance of punctuation. In The Girl's like Spaghetti, she teams up with illustrator Bonnie Timmons to show young readers the appropriate uses of apostrophes. Even savvy adults don't always know when to add that high-flying mark to plurals or possessives. This entertaining picture book instructs us with its (note absence of apostrophe) often whimsical examples.
Children's Literature - Pat Trattles
By the author/illustrator team who brought you Eats, Shoots & Leaves, this silly book shows the importance of proper apostrophe placement. The book starts with a short introduction about the importance of the apostrophe, then goes on to illustrate its use through two-page spreads showing pictures of sentences punctuated differently. For example, "Violets for display only" shows a picture of a vase of violets on a table with a sign next to it that says "for display only." The sentence on the facing page reads, "Violet's for display only," and shows the same table, vase, and sign, but instead of flowers the vase has a girl (presumably named Violet,) sitting in it. Another pairing says, "Those smelling things are my brother's" with a girl pointing to some dirty, smelly sneakers while her friends make gagging faces. The facing page says, "Those smelly things are my brothers," showing the same girl pointing to a couple of boys playing in garbage while her friends run away with clothes pins on their noses. To break it up a bit, Truss even gives us a three way comparison: "See the boys bat. See the boy's bat. See the boys' bat." To make sure kids get the point, the last spread shows thumbnails of all of the illustrations with explanations of how the apostrophe placement changes the meaning of the sentence. A fun grammar lesson, this book should be in every early elementary classroom library. Reviewer: Pat Trattles
School Library Journal

Gr 2-5
Truss and Timmons pair up again to deliver another humorous and educationally effective book about punctuation, this one dealing with the misuse of the apostrophe. In the same format as Eats, Shoots and Leaves: Why, Commas Really Do Make a Difference! (Putnam, 2006), this book presents readers with two identical sentences whose meaning changes with the simple placement of the apostrophe. The plural versus the possessive is depicted through lively cartoons illustrating the sentences. Truss again manages to keep her lessons funny and full of kid appeal with examples such as, "Those smelly things are my brother's" and "those smelly things are my brothers." Just as in the earlier title, endnotes give detailed explanations of all of the sentences, describing how their meaning is strongly influenced by the almighty apostrophe. Pair this fun and interactive book with similarly themed titles by Brian Cleary or Ruth Heller. Wordplay or "grammarplay" at its finest.
—Jennifer CoganCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
Truss follows up her hilarious guide to comma placement with a sequel focusing on the trickier concept of apostrophes. She begins with a two-page introduction explaining the use of the apostrophe in possessives, contractions and in the challenging choice of "its" vs. "it's." Each consecutive spread follows the simple but clever layout used in the preceding volume, using a minimum of text with large, appealing illustrations in Timmons's distinctive, understated style. The left-hand page shows a simple sentence or phrase without the use of the apostrophe, while the facing page adds an apostrophe that changes the meaning. For example, in "the dogs like my dad," several dogs cavort around a man with wild hair and a beard. In "the dog's like my dad," the hairy man is walking just one dog with similar red hair. Some sentence pairs are whimsical while others are laugh-out-loud funny, but the entire text is easy to understand through the charming watercolor-and-ink illustrations. The final spread shows each of the previous pages in miniature with short explanations of the grammatical terms and issues. (Picture book/nonfiction. 6-10)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780399247064
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 7/10/2007
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 176,015
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.97 (w) x 7.32 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Meet the Author

Lynne Truss is a writer and journalist who started out as a literary editor with a blue pencil and then got sidetracked. The author of three novels and numerous radio comedy dramas, she spent six years as the television critic of The Times of London, followed by four (rather peculiar) years as a sports columnist for the same newspaper. She won Columnist of the Year for her work for Women’s Journal. Lynne Truss also hosted Cutting a Dash, a popular BBC Radio 4 series about punctuation. She now reviews books for the Sunday Times of London and is a familiar voice on BBC Radio 4. She lives in Brighton, England.
BONNIE TIMMONS is best known for inspiring and creating images for the television show Caroline in the City and illustrating numerous national ad campaigns.

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2007

    Good teaching tool

    I thought this was a girls' book until I began reading thru it in B&N, then I bought it for my son when I realized it's for all kids. Now he knows the difference between 's and s'. It's a good book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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